Kathleen Gilbert

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Brown-stained surgical equipment at bizarre Rockford abortion mill: Illinois officials

Kathleen Gilbert
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ROCKFORD, Illinois, August 17, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Pro-life advocates in Rockford, Ill. have fought for years to expose the sordid abortion business at Northen Illinois Women’s Clinic. Now, Illinois health officials have released a report detailing multiple serious health violations behind the walls of the bizarre building, whose owner routinely displays anti-Christian symbols, such as a nun in a coffin and a crucified rubber chicken, in its windows.

A report by the Illinois Department of Public Health says that all three operating rooms in the facility failed a sanitation inspection. Two rooms contained shoes stored with an open box of surgical gloves, and four out of 16 cannulas - which are inserted directly into the cervix of abortion patients - were “stained with a brown substance.”

In another operating room, an open box contained gloves also stained with “a brown substance.” In the recovery room, inspectors also found birth control rings stuffed in the food refrigerator.

In the plan of correction, officials directed that “surgical supplies will be kept separate from office supplies by storing each in different drawer,” and recommended cleaning and storing shoes in a closet.

Rockford Alderman Tim Durkee, a physician, told LifeSiteNews.com that finding such unsanitary conditions “in any operating room is disturbing.”

“I think people are starting to realize that these are operating rooms. Regardless of what you think about an abortion, it’s surgery,” Durkee said. “And all surgery is supposed to be done with a certain mindset, which is sterile, clean, ... sanitary should be painfully obvious.”

Officials also reported that the clinic inspected sanitation machines quarterly instead of weekly, and had failed a sterile inspection twice within the past year.

In addition, while a registered nurse is required to be present during all operative procedures, officials found that NIWC didn’t even employ a registered nurse, and that no registered nurse had supervised patient care for over three years. NIWC staff quickly re-hired one, a previously employed nurse who had resigned in April.

According to the report, the administrator of the clinic explained to officials that “the Facility has not been able to hire and keep an RN on staff,” saying that “the local Hospitals and Nursing Homes employ all the RNs in the area.”

In addition, all five patient records inspected violated regulations by failing to record who accompanied each patient or whether there was a physical exam before the abortion.

Durkee noted that Illinois lawmakers have rejected a law to specify that the operating rooms in abortion mills be subject to the same scrutiny as other operating rooms, a decision he called “absolutely” disturbing.

“For the life of me I don’t understand how any operating room in existence can be exempt from current law,” he said. “Just because you’re putting ‘pro-abortion’ over the door doesn’t exempt you from good medical practice.”

Melaney Arnold, communications director for the Illinois Department of Public Health, told LifeSiteNews.com that the department investigated the facility in response to a complaint, “but also conducted a routine survey for the entire facility.” Arnold also said that the Department “will monitor the facility for compliance.”

Arnold said the facility was last investigated in November 2010.

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