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TOLEDO, Ohio (ChurchMilitant.com) - Bishop Daniel Thomas of Toledo is offering a pro-life defense against a patient-transfer agreement between a hospital and the city's only abortion mill.
The bishop responded in a commentary to Ohio-based ProMedica's Board of Trustees' decision in February to sign an agreement to keep Toledo's surgical abortion clinic, Capital Care Network, open, saying it "defies logic."
"The hospital states that entering into this agreement aligns with their mission and values in the belief that 'no one is beyond the reach of life-saving health care,'" Thomas said. "But in fact, because their partnering with the abortion clinic facilitates the denial of 'life-saving health care' for the most vulnerable, unborn babies, their very decision defies logic."
The transfer agreement with the Capital Care "formally puts in writing an existing practice to provide emergency medical care to all who need it to our community," commented
ProMedica spokesman Tedra White last month.
"Entering into this agreement aligns with ProMedica's mission and values, including our focus on being a health system dedicated to the well-being of northwest Ohio and our belief that no one is beyond the reach of life-saving health care," White said. "Furthermore, we believe that all individuals should have access to the best care in their neighborhoods."
Thomas continues in his commentary:
It's logical for people of good will, no matter their religion, to expect that anyone, in particular a pregnant mother experiencing a medical emergency, should be able to receive lifesaving treatment at a hospital. It is not logical for people, no matter their religion, to expect or insist that in order to provide care for a woman in a health crisis, a respected hospital should partner with a clinic whose aim is life destroying 'treatment.'
The abortion mill was known for violating
state protocol, including the failure to apply the Medical Emergencies policy as written, to document and review the event as required by its Quality Assurance program, to transport a patient to the hospital along with her medical record and to supply discharge information to the emergency room. The Ohio Department of Health inspected the abortion facility in April and issued the staff a $40,000 fine in August for its findings.
"We've always advocated for transfer agreements, that's with the assumption that both parties are in good standing with the state of Ohio and in this case, one is not," remarked
Ohio Right to Life President Mike Gonidakis.
Capital Care had a patient-transfer agreement with the University of Toledo Medical Center until 2013. After Ohio legislators forbade a public university from allowing transfer agreements to abortion clinics, the school did not renew its agreement with the abortion mill.
The abortion facility then formed an agreement with the University of Michigan Health Center in Ann Arbor, but the Ohio Department of Health revoked the clinic's ambulatory surgical center license in 2014.
The Supreme Court upheld the state's order last month, ruling 5–2 that the abortion facility did not have a valid written patient-transfer agreement with a "local
" hospital to perform surgical abortions. The Michigan hospital did not constitute a local hospital for the abortion facility to emergency transfer since it was more than 50 miles away.
In 2016, 898 of the 1,144 abortions in Toledo's Lucas County were surgical. However, the number of abortion mills in Ohio dropped from 16 to eight in the last few years.
Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed into law the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act
in 2016, which bans abortions after 20 weeks, except in cases when a fetal abnormality is detected. It went into effect last March.
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