Abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell's West Philadelphia clinic not only lacked required medical equipment and drugs for emergency resuscitation, it had no easy way to get patients out of the building on an ambulance stretcher, according to an order released today by the Pennsylvania Department of Health.
The clinic, a rambling, three-story structure at 3801 Lancaster Ave., was closed on Feb. 22, and Gosnell's medical license was suspended following a raid by federal drug agents and state authorities.
The latest order cites 14 violations of state laws, each of which is grounds for permanently shutting down the clinic. Gosnell has 30 days to respond.
His Philadelphia lawyer, William Brennan, did not respond to a request for comment.
The health department's findings add chilling detail to the earlier medical license suspension order citing "deplorable and unsanitary" conditions that made the clinic "a clear danger to the public."
Health officials reviewed records of 11 patients on whom Gosnell performed abortions between Nov. 19, 2009 and Feb. 19 - the day after the clinic was raided. Eight of those women were in the second trimester of pregnancy - 14 or more weeks.
Three of those patients developed severe complications and had to be rushed by ambulance to a hospital.
In all three cases, the health department order says, ambulance personnel found doors and halls that could not accommodate a stretcher, and locked exit doors - one of which was blocked by "an IV pole, a wheelchair, and a broken office chair."
Among other violations found by the Health Department's investigation:
Emergency resuscitation and monitoring equipment such as a heart defibrillator, breathing tubes, and a blood oxygen gauge were nonexistent or broken. The only suction source for clearing a blocked airway was the same one used for early abortions; it had no inspection sticker and corroded tubing.
Drugs to treat a patient for cardiac arrest, allergic reactions, or excessive bleeding were not stocked.
An oxygen mask and tubing were covered "in a thick gray layer" of apparent dust.