Saturday, November 26, 2011

Regions Hospital in St. Paul to stop performing abortions

Regions Hospital in St. Paul announced yesterday that it will stop performing abortions after Dec. 9. The hospital performed 545 abortions last year, according to the Minnesota Department of Health -- a number that has dropped in recent years consistent with a statewide trend of fewer abortions. From the Pioneer Press story:
Regions said the closure is consistent with a broader trend of moving services to non-hospital settings. Hospital spokesman Jeff Shelman said he would not comment on whether the hospital bowed to pressure from anti-abortion groups that have protested the service at Regions over the years. ...

"A lot of folks within the pro-life community would not access the good things that Regions does, because (the hospital is) also involved in abortion," said Scott Fischbach, executive director of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life, a group that opposes abortion rights.
This is clearly great news, even though other abortion providers will try make up the difference. Planned Parenthood, in particular, is set to open a huge new abortion center in St. Paul. From the story:
"Community-based providers are available for women seeking confidential abortion care services," said Chris Boese, vice president of patient care at Regions, in a news release. "We're confident that patients will find the care they need from providers in our community."

The closure comes as Planned Parenthood of Minnesota -- the state's largest abortion provider last year -- is scheduled to open a new facility next month on University Avenue in St. Paul. The decision by Regions should not create an access problem for local women, said Jen Aulwes, a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood.

"We're really confident that women are going to be able to get the services they need," Aulwes said.
In addition to its new abortion center, Planned Parenthood has begun doing "webcam" abortions at its Rochester, Minn., clinic -- another means of increasing abortions and counteracting the pro-life trend in our state.