Skip to main content

I found this on Twitter this morning and was shocked at how little attention it's gotten, although I see a few places like RH Reality Check have picked up the story this afternoon.

Just before Thanksgiving, the Louisiana Dept of Health and Hospitals (DHH) issued "emergency regulations" that overhauled existing regulations of abortion clinics in the state. These include new licensing procedures, changes in building square footage (for no discernible reasons) and even more egregious requirements from the patient.

According to the New Orleans Abortion Fund, which tweeted out the story this morning, patients will now be required to have blood work done THIRTY DAYS before the abortion:

Patients must have documented in their charts that hemoglobin and rh factor lab tests were performed at least 30 days prior to the abortion procedure.  This means that some patients will risk being beyond the 20 week deadline in Louisiana to have an abortion, and will add to the procedure costs for all patients, as they will have to wait an additional month.
As many health care professionals will tell you, a hemoglobin test 30 days before a procedure is all but worthless to a doctor, as the most current test is the one that gives you the most information. It's painfully obvious that it's nothing but another back door way to ban abortion and unlawful because it places an undue burden on the woman seeking an abortion.
From the RH Reality Check story on this:
“If these rules go into effect, the Department of Health and Hospitals will have the ability to start shutting clinics down just based on what the size of the facilities has always been,” said Ellie Schilling, a New Orleans attorney who represents several Louisiana abortion clinics. She discussed the most severe of the new regulations with RH Reality Check in advance of a DHH public hearing on abortion facilities in Baton Rouge on Wednesday.

Schilling says the new regulations appear to mirror legislative actions like those recently taken in Texas, which require abortion providers to make extensive physical plant modifications. Schilling also said Louisiana’s new rules severely limit abortion providers’ access to due process in appealing any citations or violations issued to them by DHH, and make it virtually impossible for abortion facility licensees to maintain licenses in good standing if facility ownership changes, or if facilities move locations. These specific new requirements are not, said Schilling, required by statute.

And I'm not finished yet- to add insult to injury,
There is no right to appeal deficiencies to any unbiased body outside of the Department of Health and Hospitals.
Although the "emergency rules" were listed as being effective November 30, 2013, there were no public hearings or indication of need.
However, there will be a hearing held on January 29th, and I encourage any of you that can attend to please do so, and make your voice heard:
A hearing will finally occur on Wednesday, January 29 at 9:30am in Room 118 of the Bienville Building in Baton Rouge.  The New Orleans Abortion Fund and members of allied organizations will be testifying and presenting written comments from advocates, providers, and women who have recently obtained abortions at affected clinics at the public hearing.
If you'd like to send an email or snail mail, the details are here:
If you cannot attend the hearing but would like to submit written comments, please email your letter, which MUST have your full name and address, to by Tuesday, January 28 at 8:00pm CST.  We will print it and hand-deliver it at the hearing.

If you prefer to mail your comments (please note they must be RECEIVED by January 30 at 4:30pm), you may send them to:

J. Ruth Kennedy
Bureau of Health Services Financing
PO Box 91030
Baton Rouge, LA 70821-0930

Originally posted to skohayes on Mon Jan 27, 2014 at 04:13 PM PST.

Also republished by Louisiana Kossacks, Pro Choice, This Week in the War on Women, and Feminism, Pro-Feminism, Womanism: Feminist Issues, Ideas, & Activism.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site