Saturday, October 10, 2015

Corbett official vows no replay of Gosnell clinic horrors

The state's top health official told a joint state committee today that action is already underway to ensure that the horrific conditions discovered during a raid last year at a Philadelphia abortion clinic are never found in Pennsylvania again

Corbett official vows no replay of Gosnell clinic horrors


The state's top health official told a joint state committee today that action is already underway to ensure that the horrific conditions discovered during a raid last year at a Philadelphia abortion clinic are never found in Pennsylvania again.

Dr. Eli Avila, the newly-named secretary of health, said he has instituted a range of policy measures since taking office in January including mandatory inspections, better monitoring of complaints and improved communication with the state's professional licensing agency. 

"I discovered a broken and disjointed system," said Avila. "My focus is on accountability and the ultimate goal is to ensure the health and safety of women who use clinics."

Physician Kermit Gosnell is charged with murder in connection with the deaths of seven babies born alive and a female patient at the Women's Medical Society in West Philadelphia. Federal drug agents found deplorable conditions at the clinic when they raided it in February 2010, including blood-stained sheets and walls and cat feces littering the floors. The Philadelphia District Attorney, Seth Williams, filed paperwork today indicating he will seek the death penalty for Gosnell.

Earlier this month Gov. Corbett fired six state officials he blamed for allowing the clinic to operate unchecked for 17 years and pledged to institute reforms to improve the inspection process.

Avila told House and Senate lawmakers he will take personal responsibility for reviewing clinic complaints and plans to visit all 24 licensed free-standing abortion clinics - as opposed to those connected to hospitals - in the state.

Sen. Pat Vance (R., Cumberland), chairman of the Senate Health and Public Welfare Committee, said she was pleased with the response by the Corbett administration, but said it is still necessary to pass laws to protect the health and safety of patients at abortion clinics over the long term.



 Click herefor's politics page.

We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog

Commonwealth Confidential gives you regularly updated coverage of the state legislature, the governor and the workings of the state bureaucracy. It is written by Angela Couloumbis in the Inquirer's Harrisburg bureau, based in the statehouse, and by the newspaper's far-flung campaign reporters.

Commonwealth Confidential
Also on
letter icon Newsletter