Groups question abortion clinic’s statistics

Mississippi State NewsThe Associated Press

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A complaint filed against Mississippi’s only abortion clinic alleges the facility has not been in compliance with state law.

The Clarion-Ledger reports ( that the complaint was filed Thursday with the Mississippi Department of Health. It questions statistics reported to the agency by Jackson Women’s Health Organization and asks officials to conduct an investigation.

The letter is signed by leaders of Pro-Life Mississippi, Physicians for Life Mississippi, Mississippi Right To Life and Pro Life Action Network. The groups say they are concerned that the clinic is “in a continuing state of non-compliance with the Abortion Reporting Law enacted in 2004, Miss. Code Ann. 41-41-78.”

Going off the 2011 abortion statistics from the state Health Department, the anti-abortion groups in their complaint highlighted “discrepancies that need clarification.”

Among them, the groups challenge the reporting of 529 abortions where the age of gestation was “unknown.” The groups asked the state to do a complete audit on clinic files to recalculate and correct the reporting.

Messages left Saturday with the clinic and for one of its lawyers were not immediately returned.

But Laurie Bertram Roberts, president of the National Organization for Women, challenged the groups’ complaint.

“Where is the evidence that JWHO did not report these statistics to the Health Department?” Roberts asked. “How the Health Department processes that information is not up to JWHO. It’s an issue Pro-Life Mississippi needs to take up with the Health Department.”

Pro-Life MS spokeswoman Tanya Britton said she believes the facility has been noncompliant over the years in various ways. “We want answers from the state Board of Health and protect the lives of women in our state,” she said.

Liz Sharlot, communications director for the Health Department, said officials check out complaints with any state-licensed facilities.

“We received the complaint Thursday and, yes, we will conduct an investigation as soon as possible,” she said. “Our role is to inspect facilities to ensure they are doing what they are supposed to be doing.”

The complaint is the latest development in the saga between the clinic and anti-abortion groups and elected officials who want the clinic shut down.

A 2012 state law requires each OB-GYN who does abortions at the clinic to have admitting privileges at a local hospital, and so far the clinic has been unable to obtain the privileges.

The law was to take effect July 1, 2012, but U.S. District Judge Dan Jordan first blocked the state from closing the clinic while the clinic tried to get admitting privileges. Then in April, he ruled the state couldn’t close the clinic while the clinic has a federal lawsuit pending.

The clinic will challenge the law at a trial set to begin March 3. The state has filed court documents saying it wants a federal appeals court to overturn Jordan’s ruling temporarily blocking the clinic’s closure.

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  • FrereJocques

    And the War on Women continues. These anti-abortion groups are not fooling anyone. Their LEAST concern is the health and safety of women. They only want to get, by using falsehoods and deception, their goal of shutting down the clinic.

    If they were TRULY concerned about the health and safety of women, they would want to keep the clinic OPEN. Women who are desperate to end an unwanted pregnancy will do so by any means. They will go to “underground” abortion providers whose practices and procedures are not regulated in ANY way, and women will be butchered without having any recourse.

    These groups, and the State’s, and especially Ayatollah Bryant’s (aka Guv’nor Philbert’s) actions are so hypocritical that it is astounding.

  • 1941641

    To me, what’s so dumb about this abortion issue is that these anti-abortionists think, or pretend to think, that they were sent by God to close down the practice of abortion on Earth. They don’t want to acknowledge that Abortion was ongoing before Moses ever received the Ten Commandments from God. Abortion was here in our society when the first men roamed the land thousands of years before Moses or Jesus ever walked on it. Abortion is not going away with the closing of abortion clinics. Instead, it will return to society in the same form it existed in before Roe-Wade. The coat hanger method of abortion was commonplace before Roe-Wade. It will make its presence known once again if Abortion becomes illegal or unavailable. Anti-abortion laws will ultimately fail if reinstated. However, Abortion will likely continue to exist without interference for the benefit of the affluent in our society aka the preacher’s daughter or the doctor’s daughter or the banker’s daughter or someone else’s daughter.

    God, from what I have determined, was not pro-choice or anti-choice. However, He was considered by many historians to be the “greatest mass murderer in recorded history.” Read about the slaughter of humans, God’s own creation, that God called for in the Holy Bible. Scandalous, Ungodly as I see it. Yet, Christians claim God Is Love. What do you think?

    What do you think about a woman’s reproductive rights? Would you want to return to the Dark Ages, the Age of the Inquisitions and their accompanying Horrors? It’s something to think seriously about.