Doctor investigated for alleged shoddy abortion

By: Maria Guerrero, KOB Eyewitness News 4

An Albuquerque doctor who performed a life-threatening late-term abortion could lose her license. It’s not because the procedure is illegal, but because of how and where it was done.

A local pro-life group brought a complaint forward and now the New Mexico Medical Board is considering action against the doctor. The board says it’s not getting into the controversy of this actual procedure but whether this clinic met the standard of care.

“The doctor’s concerned we have a uterine rupture during a late-term abortion procedure,” a 911 tape plays out on YouTube.

The 911 call was made from the Southwestern Women’s Options Clinic near Lomas and Broadway in May 2011.

The tape obtained by pro-life advocate, Tara Shaver, shows a 35-week abortion procedure that had dangerous complications.

“A patient has previous c-section,” revealed the caller to the 911 dispatcher.

Those complications sent the patient to the hospital with a ruptured uterus. No one will say if she survived.

“We’re just really tired of seeing abortion abuses in New Mexico. We want this to come to an end,” said Tara Shaver in an interview. “And we want those who are responsible to be held accountable.”

That could happen. The doctor performing the abortion, Dr. Shelley Sella, is being investigated by the state Medical Board for gross negligence.

In a Notice of Contemplated Action the board says “because of the patient’s medical history,” having a caesarean delivery, “[Sella] should have performed the procedure at a hospital instead of a clinic.”

The document goes on to say: “The uterine rupture was caused by the excessive use of uterine stimulants.”

The board met with Sella for the second day in a closed hearing.

Members are considering what if any sanctions should be leveled against the doctor. We weren’t able to reach Sella for comment.

The Medical Board has 90 days to decide on the case. Dr. Sella could lose her license to practice medicine in the state of New Mexico

Knowing Your Alternatives Webcast Replay

Did you miss our national webcast Knowing Your Alternatives to Prescribing Contraceptives with Dr. Marguerite Duane?

Fertility is a normal, healthy physiologic state.  Women’s hormonal cycles determine the fertile window when a couple will most likely conceive.  An understanding of the cycle and recognition of the external signs that determine each phase has led to the development of more environmentally friendly and highly effective forms of family planning.  Despite these advances, there is limited information about fertility awareness based methods (FABMs) being taught in medical school and residency and the majority of health professionals are trained to approach fertility as a disease state.

Dr. Marguerite Duane discussed all the options available to physicians when counseling patients on family planning options on our national webcast last week.  Her discussion was very interactive with numerous medical professionals and medical students participating. If you missed it you can replay the webcast here.

Abortion Referrals as Compassionate Care?

By: Jon Russell, National Coordinator for Medical Students for Life

I was recently contacted by an OBGYN wanting to get involved with Medical Students for Life as a mentor or speaker. The doctor was very delightful and you could tell by her voice she had a passion for life, but there was something not settling right with me.

You see, in the initial discussion we had over email, she shared her passion for the pro-life cause and wanted to share her pro-life views with others. She further explained that on occasion she referred some of her patients to a “safe” abortion clinic!?!…….Yes that alarm bell going off in your head was exactly what I heard.

During our phone conversation, I asked about her claim of being pro-life and yet referring her patients for abortion. She asked what else she was supposed to do for her patients asking for abortion services. I gently challenged her by saying, she was not practicing as a pro-life physician nor was it consistent with her Hippocratic oath to do no harm. Though she thought she was being compassionate, she was the primary care provider to both the mother and the growing fetus inside her. If she sends her patients to the abortion clinic, one or maybe both are not coming back to her clinic for a follow-up visit because one or both of them would be dead from the abortion. Referring patients for abortion is lethal and uncompassionate to both patients.

I also compared abortion referrals to the blacksmith who was asked to fix slave chains for a slave owner in the early 1800’s. The blacksmith was against slavery and had to say no to the slave owner and refused to refer the slave owner to another blacksmith.

Refusing to refer for abortion is the compassionate thing to do for your patient. The physician’s role is to heal illness, alleviate suffering, and provide comfort. Not to assist in taking a life.

I believe this doctor was divinely inspired to contact Medical Students for Life and to be challenged on her practice. I believe fully that our conversation was a new starting point for her. Please pray for doctors across the country to live out their convictions fully without compromise.

LR-120 would require that doctors notify parents at least 48 hours in advance of the abortion

By Kyle Schmauch Community News Service UM School of Journalism October 14, 2012 4:00 pm Click here for full story.

Seventeen years after the courts struck down an early attempt to require minors to notify their parents before getting an abortion, the contentious issue is back on the ballot this fall.

Legislative Referendum 120 is almost exactly like a 1995 law struck down by a Montana court as violating the Montana Constitution — with one key change.

“The difference is that the age is lower,” Jeff Laszloffy, head of the Montana Family Foundation, said, explaining the referendum would apply only to minors under 16. The previous law applied to girls under 18.

LR-120 would require that doctors notify parents or legal guardians at least 48 hours in advance of the abortion if the patient is under 16. If the minor does not want the notification to occur, she can obtain a waiver from a youth court. Notice would not be required in the case of a medical emergency.

Under the proposal, any doctor who fails to notify the parent or receive a waiver could face six months in jail and a $500 fine.

Debate over impacts

Both proponents and opponents of the referendum say their primary concern is the health and safety of young women, but they disagree over the proposed law’s impacts.

For Laszloffy, the proposal is about ensuring parents know what is happening in their family. He said LR-120 is “primarily a parental rights issue.”

He added that far less significant decisions like getting a tattoo or body piercing require parental consent ̶ a stricter requirement than notification.

“(Abortion) is the only exception where a 13-year-old can make this type of decision,” he said. “This is what happens when political correctness trumps common sense.”

But Julianna Crowley, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Montana, stressed the proposal would put vulnerable girls in harm’s way. “It’s about privacy and it’s about abortion rights,” she said.

Planned Parenthood of Montana, which opposes the ballot initiative, estimates that 80 percent of minors already tell parents or guardians about their pregnancies.

“(A notification law) puts young women who can’t go to their parents in dangerous situations,” Crowley said. “For voters, think about teens who they know may fear a violent reaction from their parents.”

Laszloffy countered that he was also concerned about a girl who faces possible violence or abuse at home.

“If she has a dangerous home situation … this (working through a youth court) is a way she could actually end the abuse.” He also said it is dangerous for parents not to know when their child has gone through a medical procedure.

Both sides acknowledge the referendum would affect only a few Montana teens each year. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 43 reported abortions occurred among teens ages 15 and under in Montana in 2008 (the most recent year available).

Déjà vu?

Thirty-seven other states have some version of a parental notification law on their books, but Montana has been here before.

In 1995, Montana’s Legislature adopted a parental notification measure. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled the Parental Notice of Abortion Act was constitutional under the United States Constitution.

However, a state district court ruled that law unconstitutional under the equal protection and privacy clauses of the Montana Constitution.

Crowley said LR-120 would raise the same legal concerns as that case. Laszloffy acknowledged that while the PNAA was thrown out as unconstitutional, lowering the age of girls covered by the law helped address the issue.

Gov. Brian Schweitzer decided differently last year when he vetoed the same legislation passed by the Republican-controlled Legislature.

The governor made note of the lower age of affected minors, but declared in his veto letter: “Given the strength of the 1995 … decision rejecting as unconstitutional an almost identical parental notice law, and a subsequent decision of the Montana Supreme Court solidifying Montana’s strong privacy provisions not only generally, but specifically in the abortion context … , I have chosen to veto SB 97.”

If the voters approve the new notification language, many observers expect an immediate and perhaps protracted legal fight over the issue.

What is it about informed consent?

What is it about informed consent that frightens abortion advocates?

Barbara Kay | Oct 4, 2012 11:02 AM ET Website

I think we’re going about this abortion debate the wrong way. We all know when life begins in the DNA sense: It begins at conception. The only people who have a bulletproof logical position on abortion are those for whom it is never ever permissible, because it is murder at any stage of gestation.

But that’s not most of us. Most of us believe abortion is admissible under certain conditions. But very few of us believe abortion should be permissible at any time before actual delivery of a live baby.

The honest amongst us do not call the fetus a wad of tissue. We know that even an embryonic baby is still a human being-in-waiting. Now we have to convince ourselves that it is okay to kill this homunculus before it gets to a stage where its resemblance to us begins to gnaw too painfully at our conscience to go through with the killing.

Everyone has a different reason for killing her unwanted fetus. Reminding them of when life begins is not going to change their minds, even those who are killing them for gender reasons.

I think we need another approach. We should not be looking at regulations over women’s bodies, but at regulations over their minds. By that I mean we should consider imposing a set of regulations to ensure that when abortions take place, they are occurring in the light of informed consent. And we need an abortion registry to gather data. Almost everyone in this abortion debate is ridiculously under-informed.

At the moment, women are hardly informed of anything about abortion before they give consent. As I have written previously, more than one previous induced abortion (IA) is a well-known risk for a premature birth in a future pregnancy. This is not a hypothesis. It is settled science. Premature birth is associated with a host of potential physical and mental deficits, the most dreaded being Cerebral Palsy. It would be interesting to have research done on all the cases of Cerebral Palsy in Canada to find out how many of them are linked to more than one previous abortion.

Risk of death also increases with each abortion. A 2012 Danish study (Priscilla Coleman, Bowling Green University) found that “Increased risks of death were 45%, 114% and 191% for 1, 2 and 3 abortions, respectively, compared to no abortions after controlling for other reproductive outcomes and last pregnancy age…”. The subjects for this study were Danish women. Since 1973 Denmark has had a national induced abortion registry. So it was not necessary to actually interview women in order to ascertain their IA history.

Read more here

More Medical Deception from Planned Parenthood

Obama Administration: Planned Parenthood Does not Perform Mammograms

By Casey Mattox, counsel with the Alliance Defense Fund.

A deliberate effort is underway to rebrand Planned Parenthood as an integral provider of healthcare services, without which untold millions of women would lack basic medical care, or so the story goes. Thus, whenever any effort is made to cut off funding for the nation’s largest abortion provider and stalwart financier of leftist politicians, we’re told there is a “war on women.”

But it’s not a “war on women” when a state simply places a higher priority on funds for true health services that Planned Parenthood doesn’t perform Take, for example, mammograms.

Yes, mammograms. Perhaps there is no greater falsehood than the deceitful, and largely successful, attempt to persuade Americans that Planned Parenthood performs mammograms. It doesn’t.

When the Komen Foundation announced in February that it would no longer provide grants to Planned Parenthood—partly due to the fact that Planned Parenthood does not directly provide mammograms – its ideological and political supporters sprang into action. They decried Komen’s decision to eliminate funding for this imagined provider of mammograms. Planned Parenthood’s Executive Director, Cecile Richards, made the claim. So did President Obama. And an unsuspecting public was led to believe that such bold claims, by people who should know, must be true.

No matter that phone calls to Planned Parenthood from Live Action demonstrated clearly that this was not the case: Obama had spoken. And the president’s campaign together with Planned Parenthood’s ads continue to beat this drum (almost as if they were coordinated), building off the earlier confusion to frighten voters about the prospect of a Romney administration cutting off funding for Planned Parenthood’s “cancer screenings.”

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