Clinic business

Miami Abortion Clinic Fights Well During Waiting Period

In the second similar case to emerge in recent weeks, a Miami abortion clinic is battling an attempt by state regulators to impose a fine for allegations that it failed to properly comply with a law requiring waiting periods. 24-hour wait before abortions can be performed.

Doctor’s Office for Women Inc., which does business as Today’s Women Medical Center, is challenging a potential $3,000 fine in a case filed Wednesday with the state’s Administrative Hearing Division.

The Florida Agency for Health Care Administration alleges it reviewed clinic records and found three incidents in April and May in which abortion surgery or pregnancy termination pills were provided less than 24 hours after patients have received the required information. The agency, which is seeking a $1,000 fine for each incident, also said the clinic lacked proper documentation.

“The documentation was necessary to establish that the doctor who was to perform the act or the referring doctor had at least, orally, while he was physically present in the room, and at least 24 hours before the act, informed the patient of the risks involved. in (part of state law),” the agency’s administrative complaint said. “In the absence of such documentation, there was no record that the clinic obtained informed consent from each patient for the procedure.”

But in a motion requesting a hearing before an administrative law judge, the clinic disputed the agency’s claims. In part, the clinic said it uses patient names in medical records and the agency refers to patients by numbers. He said medical records with numbers cited by the agency “cannot be traced to this office.”

“It appears that the agency has mixed reports from investigators from different clinics, and these violations likely belong to other departments (providers or clinics),” the petition reads.

Further, the petition states that none of the clinic’s medical records match the hours stated in the complaint.

The case relates to a 2015 state law that required 24-hour waiting periods. After years of battles over the law’s constitutionality, a Leon County circuit judge upheld the waiting period requirement in April.

A similar case was filed Aug. 1 in the Administrative Hearing Division as part of the Agency for Health Care Administration’s attempt to impose a $41,000 fine on a Hialeah abortion clinic. , A GYN Diagnostic Center. The agency alleged that it reviewed the facility’s records on May 17 and could not find documentation indicating that 41 patients received the required information at least 24 hours before the abortions were performed.

Administrative Law Judge Robert Cohen is scheduled to hear arguments Oct. 17-18 in the Hialeah case.

The Agency for Health Care Administration is also facing an administrative challenge in an attempt to revoke the license of a Pensacola abortion clinic, Integrity Medical Care, LLC, which does business as American Family. Schedule.

The case, scheduled for hearing in November, focused in part on complications suffered by two women who visited the clinic in March and May for second-trimester abortions. He alleged doctors and staff failed to meet the proper standard of care – an allegation the clinic disputes.

The administrative disputes came amid a national debate over abortion rights, largely sparked by the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in June to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade. They also came amid a court battle over a new Florida law that bans abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

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