Planned parenthood responds to state investigation


NAPLES, Fla. —  Monday, Planned Parenthood filed a request for an emergency injunction to protect women’s access to safe, legal abortion in Florida. The organization is disputing the Agency of Health Care Administration’s (AHCA) findings that three of the facilities in Florida, including Fort Myers and Naples, were performing unlicensed abortions.

Attorney Julie Gallagher, a former general counsel for the state’s agency for healthcare administration, says the injunction seeks to prevent any further sanctions against the facilities.  Gallagher says the three facilities cited are licensed to perform first trimester abortions, and have been following the rules put in place by the agency back in 2006.

“We’ve been doing what we’ve been doing for the last 9 years and it
hasn’t been an issue,” Gallagher said.  “Now suddenly they’re calling these procedures that have been first trimester procedures, now they’re calling them
second. When nothing’s changed.”

No Planned Parenthood facilities have been criminally charged and the organization’s lawsuit is not seeking any monetary damages at this time.

Below is the full statement from Barbara Zdravecky, the CEO of Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida:

“AHCA’s claim that any Planned Parenthood health centers, including the health centers cited in St. Petersburg, Ft. Myers and Naples, are performing procedures we are not licensed to perform is simply false. All Florida Planned Parenthood health centers are operating in full compliance with state law as well as best practices in reproductive health care.

“Nearly a decade ago, state officials made it clear that Planned Parenthood is operating fully within the law, and nothing has changed. The state’s actions are patently disingenuous and constitute a wholly unwarranted political attack.

“Planned Parenthood’s rigorous medical standards and guidelines are informed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the Society for Family Planning, other professional organizations and published literature.

“At the federal and state levels, there are multiple agencies that oversee and regulate Planned Parenthood health care providers—and we don’t stop there. Planned Parenthood health centers go through an accreditation process, with rigorous standards, regular review and inspections, and ongoing training. We constantly evaluate new research in the field, new recommendations from medical associations, new technologies, and feedback from patients, experts, and regulators to continually improve our practices.”

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