Abortion Case in North Dakota Should Not be Settling in Secret, Urges the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

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| Source: Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

TUCSON, Ariz., Feb. 14, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) deplores the cancellation of the trial this week by North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, on the good law preventing abortion unless the abortionist has hospital admitting privileges within 30 miles to handle complications. This law, AAPS explains, ends "hit and run" abortions that cause victims who have complications to be seen by other physicians who do not have any idea what went wrong. In no other medical procedure is a person who causes complications allowed to be unavailable to fix those complications.

The North Dakota attorney general's office has not explained why it agreed with the abortion clinic in canceling the trial, or what its secret settlement talks are all about. The law is pro-woman, and pro-medicine, AAPS states. It protects against heinous tragedies like those exposed by the Kermit Gosnell trial, and reduces the abortion industry's shifting of the cost of complications onto the public.

"Public officials are elected to defend good laws that protect women, as the 30-mile rule does in North Dakota," observed AAPS executive director Jane Orient, M.D. "What is the point of having a legislature if abortion clinics are able to get their way in secret in court, and avoid public trials about application of the law?"

Physicians at the abortion clinic, who may be from out-of-state, have reportedly just obtained hospital admitting privileges by Sanford Health in Fargo in order to comply with the new law. While good physicians can face obstacles and delays in obtaining hospital admitting privileges, Orient notes, the abortion doctors apparently had no difficulty at all.

Secret settlements on such an important public issue are no substitute for a trial in open court, AAPS states. Like any litigant, the abortion clinic can request to have its case dismissed. But the attorney general's job is to defend the law.

"The good people of North Dakota should consider bringing a citizen's petition to recall Wayne Stenehjem if he is so weak in defending such a good law," said AAPS General Counsel Andy Schlafly. "An attorney general is supposed to work for the people, and not cave into the demands of an abortion clinic."

There should be more trials, not fewer, to bring greater transparency to abortion clinics, AAPS states.

The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) is a national organization representing physicians in all specialties, founded in 1943 to preserve private medicine and the patient-physician relationship.

Jane M. Orient, M.D.
(520) 323-3110