A wonderful thing happened in Georgia on October 1, 2012. The Department of Community Health affirmed the denial of the waiver request of Atlanta Women's Medical Center located at 235 W. Wieuca Road, Atlanta, Georgia. This facility performs abortions up to twenty four weeks and regulations required that facilities such as these that are located on the second floor must have an elevator. This center does not, hence the request for the elevator waiver. After obtaining the waiver it became apparent they were not taking care to meet its requirements because when investigated it was determined they routinely failed to escort patients down the stairs after surgery and on at least one occasion failed to inform the 911 operator there was no elevator which delayed the EMTs in getting an injured patient out of the building. So it is wonderful news that the waiver was denied – the health of women was routinely being put at risk each and every time they failed to meet the waiver's provisions. Thank you Governor Deal and Commissioner Cook for putting Georgia's women first!
As excited as I am about the affirmation, I cannot and could not answer the questions that have been coming in about AWMC's status. Is AWMC still doing abortions or were they shut down? As of this writing they are still doing late term abortions, putting the health of Georgia women at risk and I can find no information online about what happens in these instances. Does the state issue a cease and desist order telling them to shut it down? Is there some kind of grace period they have to bring themselves into compliance with the ambulatory surgical center regulations? Can they just say they are no longer performing second trimester abortions and remain open doing only first trimester? These are questions I have no answers to. I have several calls into the Department of Community Health and I will ask these questions if anyone returns even one of those calls. Stay tuned. If I get answers I will pass them on to you . . .