The facility’s abortions will replace the practice of Dr. Dennis Christensen, who had performed abortions up to 22 weeks at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Madison until he retired in December. Planned Parenthood’s facilities will still perform abortions up to 19 weeks.
It is estimated that between 120 and 130 procedures will be performed at the new site each year. A few would, according to statistics confirmed by UW staff, be performed on babies with severe medical conditions. However, 75 percent of the abortions will be of healthy infants, according to Dr. Laurel Rice, chair of obstetrics and gynecology at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health, as reported in the Madison Catholic Herald.
The Wisconsin Catholic Conference, the policy voice of the state’s Catholic bishops, went on record as strongly opposed to this move by the Madison Surgery Center.
“Institutions that are committed to healing and saving human lives do not advance that mission by performing induced abortions,” wrote Barbara Sella, WCC associate director for respect life and social concerns, in a letter to the UW Hospitals and Clinics (UWHC), the UW Medical Foundation, and Meriter Hospital.
Sella added that UWHC’s involvement was “particularly distressing.”
“Even if tax dollars are not involved, as the state’s leading medical research and teaching institution,” she wrote, “the UWHC is both a symbol and a reflection of who we are as a people.”
The usual arguments in favor of this procedure were presented to the board by abortion supporters in the months prior to the vote.
However, perhaps one of the biggest arguments in support of our pro-life position came out of Tampa at the same time.
On the same day as the UW vote – Feb. 6 – Florida’s Board of Medicine revoked the license of a doctor accused of medical malpractice in a case in which a baby was delivered prior to a scheduled abortion, only to be placed in a plastic bag at the abortion facility and allowed to die.
According to the Associated Press, Sycloria Williams, 18, went to Miami’s Miramar Woman Center Inc, to have a second trimester abortion on July 17, 2006. She paid $1,200 for Dr. Pierre Jean-Jacque Renelique to terminate her 23-week pregnancy.
Three days later, while in the clinic’s Hialeah facility, Williams went into labor and delivered a live baby girl. According to the health department reports, a clinic owner, who had no medical license, cut the umbilical cord, placed the baby in the bag and threw it out. An autopsy showed that the girl – whom the mother named Shanice – had breathed air, proving she had been born alive.
Even the pro-abortion supporters were shocked. Joanne Sterner, president of the Broward County chapter of the National Organization for Women, admitted to being “really disturbed” by the incident, as reported in the Buffalo News.
Now that our Wisconsin tax dollars may, even if circuitously, be helping to fund this type of abortion on babies of the same age as Shanice – we should all be disturbed.
For more on the case, visit the Florida Catholic Web site .