FARGO, ND, February 14, 2014 ( – A Fargo hospital has granted admitting privileges to abortionists at North Dakota's only abortion facility, allowing the business to comply with a state law that threatened to close its doors.

Sanford Health announced on Thursday that it had extended its “open” privileges system to physicians employed at the Red River Women’s Clinic, managed by Tammi Kromenaker.

Sanford Executive Vice President Cindy Morrison said in a press release that the medical facility has no reservations about abortion as such. “Sanford does not take a position on the issue and we do not perform abortion on demand,” she said.


Their decision to grant these admitting privileges is “based on objective criteria that is completely focused on protecting patients and providing safe patient care.”

“Sanford has had an open medical staff model for over 100 years,” which states that doctors “have the right to practice within our hospital as long as they meet certain” criteria related to training and certification “applied in a neutral unbiased manner.”

Sanford Health, which has locations in 126 areas, says in its mission statement that it is “dedicated to the work of health and healing.”

The concession is a boon to the only abortion facility in the state, which had sued to block the enforcement of the measure, stating its out-of-state doctors would be unable to receive such recognition.

Essentia Health, a Catholic hospital in Fargo, has said it does not grant admitting privileges to doctors who perform abortion. The city's third hospital is associated with the Veteran's Administration.

Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple signed SB 2305, requiring abortionists to have admitting privileges within 30 miles of their office, last March. The law, intended to safeguard women from the effects of botched abortions, was to have taken effect August 1, but the facility – aided by the New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights – won a legal injunction preventing it from taking effect.

East Central District Judge Wickham Corwin, who stands accused of sexually harassing a court reporter, granted an injunction against the law in July, saying it may force the Red River facility to close.

Judge Corwin combined the admitting privileges lawsuit with another case related to chemical abortions. Autumn Katz of the Center for Reproductive Rights had indicated to national media this week that the parties were close to reaching a settlement.

Eight states have passed laws requiring abortionists to have admitting privileges at a local hospital. Abortionists say the regulation is unrelated to women's health, but a coalition of 32 medical associations passed a resolution in 2003 stating that anyone who performed surgery, including “reproductive” surgery “must have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, a transfer agreement with another physician who has admitting privileges at a nearby hospital, or maintain an emergency transfer agreement with a nearby hospital.”

The Fargo facility, which performs an estimated 1,200 abortions a year, has had issues meeting state medical requirements in the past. In 2010, Dr. Lori Lynn Thorndike and Dr. Miriam McCreary from the Red River Women's Clinic were caught practicing after their medical licenses expired, Operation Rescue reported.

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Facing a pro-life public, Tami Kromenaker has resorted to finding support from any source she can. Last summer, the facility's owner accepted an award from members of the Revolutionary Communist Party USA. And she participated in a rally that called for a Marxist revolution in the United States.


Sanford Health
801 Broadway N.
Fargo, ND 58122-0001