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The Grand Jury report in the Gosnell trial begins:
“This case is about a doctor who killed babies and endangered women. What we mean is that he regularly and illegally delivered live, viable, babies in the third trimester of pregnancy – and then murdered these newborns by severing their spinal cords with scissors. The medical practice by which he carried out this business was a filthy fraud in which he overdosed his patients with dangerous drugs, spread venereal disease among them with infected instruments, perforated their wombs and bowels – and, on at least two occasions, caused their deaths. Over the years, many people came to know that something was going on here. But no one put a stop to it.
Let us say right up front that we realize this case will be used by those on both sides of the abortion debate. We ourselves cover a spectrum of personal beliefs about the morality of abortion. For us as a criminal grand jury, however, the case is not about that controversy; it is about disregard of the law and disdain for the lives and health of mothers and infants. We find common ground in exposing what happened here, and in recommending measures to prevent anything like this from ever happening again.”
The “Women’s Medical Society”
That was the impressive-sounding name of the clinic operated in West Philadelphia, at 38th and Lancaster, by Kermit B. Gosnell, M.D. Gosnell seemed impressive as well. A child of the neighborhood, Gosnell spent almost four decades running this clinic, giving back – so it appeared – to the community in which he continued to live and work.
But the truth was something very different, and evident to anyone who stepped 2 inside. The clinic reeked of animal urine, courtesy of the cats that were allowed to roam (and defecate) freely. Furniture and blankets were stained with blood. Instruments were not properly sterilized. Disposable medical supplies were not disposed of; they were reused, over and over again. Medical equipment – such as the defibrillator, the EKG, the pulse oximeter, the blood pressure cuff – was generally broken; even when it worked, it wasn’t used. The emergency exit was padlocked shut. And scattered throughout, in cabinets, in the basement, in a freezer, in jars and bags and plastic jugs, were fetal remains. It was a baby charnel house.”
We certainly hope there are no Gosnells in Massachusetts. We do know that one doctor was convicted of manslaughter after a young woman died during an abortion when he left her unattended. We know that another doctor practiced without a license for 15 years in another state. We know that ambulances have been seen at the back doors of many of the abortion facilities across the state.
We also know that both the US House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Judiciary Committee have asked Massachusetts State Officials to provide them with more information about regulation and accountability of abortion facilities in Massachusetts. To date, only one of these requests has received a response. CLICK HERE to see a copy of the Energy and Commerce Committee’s letter to the Commonwealth’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services and CLICK HERE to view an example copy of the letter which the Judiciary Committee sent to all the state attorneys general around the country.
We call on the Massachusetts Department of Public Health to hold abortion facilities accountable to the same standards as other ambulatory surgical facilities.