Confirmed: State Law Prohibits Abortion Doctor from Doing Abortions

July 24, 2014

Indiana State Department of Health Informs Dr. Ulrich Klopfer that He Cannot Perform Abortions in Gary, Ind.

GARY, IND. – A new state law that requires abortion doctors to document hospital admitting privileges with the state is barring one abortion doctor from doing abortions. Indiana Right to Life and Lake County Right to Life obtained documentation from the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) that informs Dr. Ulrich Klopfer that he cannot perform abortions because he failed to submit admitting privilege documentation as required by the new law.

In a letter dated June 27 from Randall Snyder, PT, MBA of the ISDH to Klopfer of Gary’s Friendship Family Planning facility, Klopfer is told, “This letter is to inform the above referenced clinic that it has not submitted admitting privilege documentation or agreements with the request for license renewal. While the requirement does not prevent the clinic from becoming licensed, no procedures may be performed in the clinic after June 30, 2014 until the clinic has a valid admitting privileges document or agreement per IC 16-34-2-4.5 for each physician performing procedures and the documents are/have been submitted to the Indiana State Department of Health…”

The letter also informs Klopfer of punishment if he fails to comply. “Any physician performing procedures in the clinic without the required documentation and submission to the Indiana State Department of Health is subject to the criminal actions per statute.”

The state law affecting Klopfer was included in Senate Bill 292 by Senators John Waterman (District 39) and Jim Banks (District 17) during the 2014 Indiana General Assembly session. On March 25, Gov. Mike Pence signed the bill into law. The law took effect July 1. Prior to the law’s enactment, Indiana abortion doctors were supposed to have admitting privileges, but the earlier-passed law did not require them to prove that they had privileges themselves or maintained a relationship with a back-up physician.

In addition to the Family Friendship Planning facility in Gary, Ind., Klopfer also runs abortion facilities in Fort Wayne and South Bend, Ind. Klopfer has not been able to perform abortions at his Fort Wayne location since Dec. 31, 2013 when he lost his back-up physician as required by a county ordinance. The ISDH indicates that Klopfer can continue abortions in South Bend, Ind. because he has submitted verified admitting privilege documentation for that location.

“We commend the Indiana State Department of Health for ensuring that the law is being followed,” said Mike Fichter, President and CEO of Indiana Right to Life. “Admitting privilege laws protect women if they experience complications after an abortion. If a woman has an emergency arise after an abortion, she can expect streamlined care when admitting privilege laws are being followed and there is a back-up physician in place.

“It is likely that Dr. Klopfer did not have legally-required admitting privileges through a back-up physician under the old law that required admitting privileges but never required proof of compliance. We’re thankful that no women, that we’re aware of, suffered a serious emergency or death while Dr. Klopfer was allegedly not complying with the law. Since Dr. Klopfer resides in Illinois, it is especially important that a physician be available to provide care should an emergency arise after an abortion.”

Klopfer is the abortion doctor who has recently made headlines for alleged incompliance with reporting abortions on 13-year-old girls as required by law. Klopfer has a hearing on Aug. 1 in St. Joseph County after he was charged with failing to report an abortion performed in South Bend, Ind. on a 13-year-old girl. According to National Right to Life news, Klopfer could face a fine of $1,000 and 180 days in jail if he is convicted of the Class B misdemeanor. He also faces a similar charge for late reporting of an abortion on a 13-year-old girl performed in Gary, Ind. He is scheduled to go to trial in Lake County on Jan. 26, 2015.

2014.06.27 Friendship Preclusion Ltr copy-page-001View the letter from the ISDH to Klopfer here.

Indiana Right to Life’s mission is to protect the right to life, especially of unborn children, through positive education, compassionate advocacy and promotion of healthy alternatives to abortion.

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Indiana’s 2013 Abortion Rate Continues Downward Trend

July 15, 2014

2013 Saw 8.9 Percent less Abortions Compared to Previous Year

INDIANAPOLIS – An analysis of recently released abortion figures for 2013 by the Indiana State Department of Health shows the abortion rate continues on a downward trend. In 2013, there were 8,027 abortions in Indiana, compared to 2012’s rate of 8,808, or an 8.9 percent drop.

The abortion figures show that 2013 marked the fifth consecutive year of drops in the statewide abortion rate. Last year’s 8,027 abortions also mark a more than 50 percent drop in abortions since the all-time high of 16,505 abortions in 1980. Last year was the lowest number of abortions in Indiana since 1975, or one year after the U.S. Supreme Court legalized abortion nationwide.

“We are encouraged that the number of abortions in Indiana continues to drop, but we mourn the loss of 8,027 unborn boys and girls,” stated Mike Fichter, President and CEO of Indiana Right to Life. “We look forward to the day when the abortion rate is zero. Until then, we will continue to work with our partners in the pro-life community to provide positive alternatives for women facing unplanned or complicated pregnancies. Women don’t need to feel like abortion is their only option; thousands of Hoosiers are ready to provide support to both mother and child during pregnancy and after birth.”

The full state report is available at: www.in.gov/isdh/reports/itp/2013/index.htm.

Indiana Right to Life’s mission is to protect the right to life, especially of unborn children, through positive education, compassionate advocacy and promotion of healthy alternatives to abortion.

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Carhart Closes Indianapolis Abortion Facility

July 3, 2014

Timing of the Closure Corresponds to State Abortion Law Taking Effect

INDIANAPOLIS – Nationally known late-term abortionist, Dr. LeRoy Carhart, has closed his Indianapolis abortion facility. Carhart performed first trimester abortions at Affiliated Women’s Services on Distributors Drive in Indianapolis. Affiliated Women’s Services no longer appears on the state’s list of licensed abortion facilities. The timing of the closure corresponds to the new state law requiring that abortion doctors report their admitting privileges credentials to the state, among other requirements.

Operation Rescue, a national pro-life organization that monitors abortion facilities, provided additional details on the Affiliated Women’s Services closure:

Financial woes and a lack of demand for abortions have shut down Affiliated Women’s Services in Indianapolis, Indiana, where Carhart worked one day per week.

Operation Rescue confirmed that the clinic owner, Lois Bennett, owes nearly $20,000 in back property taxes on the abortion facility. The building is set to be sold by the county at public auction in August in an attempt to recover the delinquent taxes.
The abortion facility had been in operation for 32 years.

At the time of its closure, the Medical Licensing Board of Indiana was actively investigating Carhart in response to a complaint filed by Operation Rescue earlier this year. That complaint raised questions concerning patient safety at Affiliated Women’s Services after Operation Rescue documented seven recent abortion-related medical emergencies involving Carhart at facilities in Nebraska and Maryland, including a patient death in 2013.

“After more than three decades in existence, the closure of Affiliated Women’s Services is significant,” stated Mike Fichter, President and CEO of Indiana Right to Life. “We are thankful that Dr. Carhart will no longer practice in our state. We don’t know the specific reason for the facility’s closure, but the timing corresponds with new state law requiring abortion doctors to document their admitting privileges. If Dr. Carhart was complying with the law prior to having to prove his admitting privileges credentials, we don’t know who his back-up was.”

On July 1, a new law took effect requiring all abortion doctors performing abortions in the state to have the appropriate credentials to admit patients themselves to a hospital in case of emergency or have a relationship with a physician who has admitting privileges. The law states that hospital admitting privileges documentation must be kept on file at the abortion facility and filed with the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH). The law requires the ISDH to verify the validity of the admitting privileges documents. Prior to the law, abortion doctors had to have admitting privileges, but they never had to prove them.

Indiana Right to Life’s mission is to protect the right to life, especially of unborn children, through positive education, compassionate advocacy and promotion of healthy alternatives to abortion.

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Abortion Admitting Privileges Law Takes Effect Today

July 1, 2014

Law Requires Abortionists to Prove Hospital Admitting Privileges

INDIANAPOLIS – Today, a new state law takes effect regarding abortion doctors and hospital admitting privileges. All abortion doctors performing abortions in the state must have the appropriate credentials to admit patients themselves to a hospital in case of emergency or have a relationship with a physician who has admitting privileges. The law states that hospital admitting privileges documentation must be kept on file at the abortion facility and filed with the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH). The law requires the ISDH to verify the validity of the admitting privileges documents.

The hospital admitting privileges law was included in Senate Bill 292 by Senators John Waterman (District 39) and Jim Banks (District 17) during the 2014 Indiana General Assembly session. On Mar. 25, Gov. Mike Pence signed the bill into law.

“The law requiring hospital admitting privileges is necessary to protect a woman experiencing complications after an abortion,” stated Mike Fichter, President and CEO of Indiana Right to Life. “Under this new law, the Indiana State Department of Health will ensure that abortion doctors are prepared to facilitate emergency care for women with abortion complications. Hospital admitting privileges laws enable streamlined care based on a woman’s current medical situation.

“Prior to this law, an abortion doctor could claim to have hospital admitting privileges, but he or she would never have to legally disclose if the hospital admitting privileges were held personally of if they were acquired through a relationship with another doctor. The law that goes into effect today allows the state to verify that the law is being met. This is important for the health of Hoosier women.

“A similar admitting privilege law, enacted on the county level in Allen County, is currently prohibiting an abortion doctor from performing abortions at his Fort Wayne facility. On Dec. 31, 2013, Dr. Ulrich Klopfer’s back-up doctor with admitting privileges rescinded his role as back-up doctor. Since Klopfer resides in Illinois, it is imperative that a doctor be available after the abortion doctor is no longer in the area if an emergency arises. Klopfer is not the only doctor who does abortions in Indiana but resides outside of the state. This county hospital admitting privileges law not only ensures that someone is available to provide care if an emergency arose, but it also allows the county to verify that the law is being followed.

“Like in Allen County, the new state law enacted today has the potential to keep Indiana abortion doctors from performing abortions if they cannot prove the status of their hospital admitting privileges.

“We commend our elected leaders for passing this law and protecting women’s health.”

The new law also permits the ISDH to inspect abortion facilities at least once per year and to perform complaint inspections as needed. It requires abortion providers to give a woman seeking an abortion emergency contact information. Finally, it mandates that the public can verify with the ISDH that hospital admitting privileges documentation is on file with the department. The law can be viewed here.

Indiana Right to Life’s mission is to protect the right to life, especially of unborn children, through positive education, compassionate advocacy and promotion of healthy alternatives to abortion.

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