Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

Community News Network

July 15, 2013

Texas abortion clinics need million-dollar fixes to remain open

AUSTIN, Texas —

Requirements for wider hallways, janitor closets and back-up generators will likely be the downfall of Amy Hagstrom Miller's abortion business in Texas.
               

Texas lawmakers last week approved a law requiring that abortion clinics become hospital-like outpatient surgical centers, with detailed rules for how the buildings are designed. Owners of the state's 36 clinics, including five run by Miller, would need to spend millions of dollars to comply - adding features such as showers, single-sex locker rooms and special airflow systems - or either relocate or shut down.
               

"Comments about how abortion providers have enough money to just build these facilities are bogus," Miller, 46, said via email. "Over the past 10 years all we've done is grow, and I'm proud of what we have built. We did our first layoff yesterday and it was heartbreaking."
               

Clinic operators around the state are now forced to consider whether they can pay the bill. Even if they succeed, providers face another hurdle under the new law: Their doctors are required to gain admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. Clinics' ability to comply will determine whether women can obtain legal abortions in the state.
               

Texas would become the largest and most-populous state to approve comprehensive clinic regulations once the measure is signed by Gov. Rick Perry, R, a supporter. It's part of a widening thrust by abortion foes in Republican-led states to make it harder for women to obtain abortions by cracking down on providers. Texas already had abortion laws aimed at patients, such as a mandatory 24-hour waiting period between consulting with a doctor and undergoing the procedure.
               

In the past few years, similar structural requirements for clinics have been blamed for closings in Virginia and Pennsylvania. North Carolina lawmakers are considering giving state health officials the power to impose similar rules.

Text Only
Community News Network
Features
AP Video
Dempsey: Putin May Light Fire and Lose Control In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites Anti-violence Advocate Killed, but Not Silenced. Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Officials Warn of Avoidable Death in Hot Cars Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' House Committee at Odds Over Obama Lawsuit
Facebook
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Upon completion and reopening of Third Street, should the City of Knoxville wait to start the next stage of the Streetscape and Infrastructure project until 2015?

Yes
No
     View Results