Kansas House follows Virginia in regulating abortion clinics; bans telemed abortion
TOPEKA, Kansas, April 1, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Kansas is poised to follow in the legislative footsteps of Virginia by creating new regulations that bring abortion clinics in line with hospital standards for outpatient surgical centers. The bill would mandate annual surprise inspections by the health department to enforce those regulations, and would also ban “telemed” RU-486 abortions.
The House passed the bill by a 97-26 vote Thursday.
The legislation would affect three abortion clinics in the state, which are located in Kansas City and the surrounding area.
Senate leaders intend to bring the legislation directly to the floor for a vote later in April where it is expected to pass, reports the Kansas City Star. Gov. Sam Brownback is likely to sign the legislation.
“Abortion supporters claimed abortion-on-demand needed to be made legal so it would be safe, but their opposition to this and similar state-oversight bills illustrates the cold truth that their overriding concern is how many abortions they can do, not how safely,” said Mary Kay Culp, executive director of the anti-abortion group Kansans for Life.
Kansans for Life State Legislative Director Kathy Ostrowski also noted that even the abortionist at the Planned Parenthood Overland Park clinic testified to the legislature that telemedicine abortions were a bad idea. In a telemed abortion an abortionist in a different facility remotely distributes the abortion drug RU-486 to a pregnant mother via webcam.
“Abortion by pill is the fastest-growing segment of Kansas abortion — 26% of all Kansas abortions last year,” said Ostrowski. “The 2-drug regimen of RU486 is dangerous: responsible for the deaths of at least 13 women worldwide and potentially as many as 30 or more, and, according to 2006 FDA figures, has injured at least 1,100 women — requiring everything from hospitalization to blood transfusions.”
Just last week, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell signed into law a similar bill that also brings abortion clinics into conformity with the state’s regulations for outpatient surgical centers and hospitals. Although abortion is the most common surgical procedure for women in the United States, abortion clinics often operate under different standards, being treated as doctor’s offices rather than outpatient surgical centers.