Philadelphia Abortion Doctor Charged With Murder and Racketeering
A grand jury in Philadelphia has returned an Indictment against Dr. Kermit Gosnell and several of his staff, charging them with first degree murder, racketeering and other crimes. Gosnell owned and operated a clinic that performed abortions. His patients were mostly poor and minorities. He allegedly performed late-term abortions, past 24 weeks (the legal cut-off.) During these procedures, he allegedly would induce labor, extract the allegedly viable fetus, and sever the fetus' spinal cord using scissors. The Indictment alleges the fetuses were viable babies born alive, and Dr. Gosnell's actions were murder.
It alleges his unlicensed staff administered labor inducing drugs and narcotics for pain relief in his absence (he only showed up at night after the women had been writhing around in pain all day), and then, amidst squalid conditions and re-using unsanitized equipment, he extracted the fetuses.
The Grand Jury blasts the employees of the state and local health departments and the prosecutors for the Board of Medicine for allowing Gosnell's clinic to continue after reports of death, grossly unsanitary conditions, spread of venereal diseases and infections and more.
The Grand Jury says this is not about abortion, which is legal until 24 weeks in Pennsylvania.
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.
The people who ran this sham medical practice included no doctors other than Gosnell himself, and not even a single nurse. Two of his employees had been to medical school, but neither of them were licensed physicians....Among the rest of the staff, there was no one with any medical licensing or relevant certification at all. But that didn’t stop them from making diagnoses, performing procedures, administering drugs.
One sample paragraph:
Gosnell set up his practice to rely entirely on the untrained actions of his unqualified employees. They administered drugs to induce labor, often causing rapid and painful dilation and contractions. But Gosnell did not like it when women screamed or moaned in his clinic, so the staff was under instruction to sedate them into stupor.
This clinic should have been shut down years ago, not because abortions were being performed, but because of the squalid conditions, risk to the lives of the mothers and lack of medical personnel. Dr. Gosnell had a history of malpractice suits that were settled.
Dr. Gosnell is entitled to the presumption of innocence. An Indictment is merely a statement of charges and not proof of a crime.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health, Board of Medicine and other regulatory agencies, including lawyers at the PA Dept. of State that were aware of the alleged atrocities involving what the grand jury terms the "butchering of women" and the spread of venereal disease and infection due to the unsanitary conditions and re-use of unsterilized equipment, are not.
Pennsylvania is not a third-world country. There were several oversight agencies that stumbled upon and should have shut down Kermit Gosnell long ago....In the end, Gosnell was only caught by accident, when police raided his offices to seize evidence of his illegal prescription selling. Once law enforcement agents went in, they couldn’t help noticing the disgusting conditions, the dazed patients, the discarded fetuses. That is why the complete regulatory collapse that occurred here is so inexcusable. It should have taken only one look.
The Grand Jury makes some recommendations:
We recommend that the Pennsylvania Department of Health plug the hole it has created for abortion clinics. They should be explicitly regulated as ambulatory surgical facilities, so that they are inspected annually and held to the same standards as all other outpatient procedure centers. Inspectors should review patient files, including ultrasound images, on site. Equipment, and employees’ licenses, should be scrutinized. Second trimester abortions should be performed or supervised by physicians board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology.
The Pennsylvania Department of State must repair its review process. Complaints should be taken by internet and telephone, and patients should be assured of confidentiality and a response when the investigation is completed. No complaint should be dismissed until the subject’s full history of prior complaints has been considered, and malpractice databases have been examined. Reports about individual doctors should be cross-checked against reports about the medical offices where they have worked, and vice versa.
The Philadelphia Department of Public Health should do at least as much to control infectious medical waste as it does to inspect swimming pools and beauty parlors.
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