Louisiana Covernor Signs Abortion Ban
AL Abortion Site Surrenders Operating License
US Justices Accept Second Abortion Case
KS Abortion Site Sells Out, Holds Yard Sale
Abortion Site in OH Operates Without License
Wisconsin Rt to Life Says Pro-Abortion Groups Lied
Professor: Children Born After Abortion was Banned Had Better Lives, Education
Induced Abortion and Preterm Birth
'Ancel-Papiernik' Abstract on Preterm Birth Risk
Abortion Shunners Get Insurance Discount
Baby left for dead is all grown up – She graduated high school a few miles from site of her rescue
ALABAMA ABORTION SITE SURRENDERS LICENSE AFTER WOMAN DELIVERS DEAD FULL-TERM BABY. Summit Medical Center, under investigation for allegations of severe misconduct voluntarily surrendered its license 13June. Allegations vs. Summit: a nurse practitioner gave an ultrasound to a woman in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy concluding she was only 6 weeks pregnant. The practitioner then gave the woman mifeprex (RU 486), intended for use only within the first 9 weeks of pregnancy, despite the woman’s dangerously high blood pressure.
Summit is under investigation by the AL Board of Medical Examiners and could face criminal charges. The board has temporarily suspended the licenses of Dr. Deborah Lyn Levich & nurse practitioner Janet F. Onthank King, and banned them from working together. The board has accused Dr. Levich of allowing nurse practitioner King to prescribe drugs and perform services she was not qualified to carry out. Dr. Levich has been summoned to a board hearing on July 18.
A lawsuit was brought against Summit in June of 2004, after a woman died of a perforated uterus. The doctor who performed the abortion, also named in the suit, had his license to practice medicine suspended in the AL & MS in 2004. Abortionist Malachy DeHenre was accused of “gross malpractice” by the Medical Licensure Commission of Alabama after 3 women required complete hysterectomies to control severe haemorrhaging following abortions, & Leigh Ann Stephens Alford died. Summit has abortion sites left in CT, GA, MI and NV, & in Montgomery, AL. [15June 06 LifeSiteNews.com]
JUSTICES ACCEPT 2ND ABORTION CASE. The Supreme Court has accepted a second case testing the constitutionality of a federal law banning a specific, controversial late-term abortion procedure critics call "partial birth" abortion. The justices agreed to decide the contentious issue this fall. The new appeal comes from the Bush administration, which lost after a lawsuit filed by the reproductive rights group Planned Parenthood. A federal appeals court based in San Francisco threw out the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Act of 2003 as unconstitutional because it did not provide a health exception to pregnant women facing a medical emergency. A similar ruling from a federal appeals court based in St. Louis reached similar conclusions.
The outcome of these latest challenges could turn on the legal weight given past rulings on the "health exception." In states where such exceptions are allowed, the criteria include the possibility of severe blood loss, damage to vital organs or loss of fertility. Court briefs noted pregnant women having the procedure most often have their health threatened by cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure or risk of stroke. Doctors would be given the discretion to recommend when the late-term procedure should be performed. The federal law has never gone into effect, pending the outcome of more than three years of legal appeals. Using an earlier legal standard, the court, divided 5-4, concluded the state law was an "undue burden" on women because it lacked the critical health exception. Abortion rights groups object to the term "partial birth," and even "late-term abortion." Doctors call the procedure an intact dilation and extraction, or intact D and E. [AP, 19June; June 20, 2006 http://www.cnn.com/2006/LAW/06/19/scotus.abortion/index.html; B. Mears, CNN]
WI RIGHT TO LIFE SAYS PRO-ABORTION GROUPS LIED. Wisconsin Right to Life (WRL) says pro-abortion organizations there have lied about the status of a pro-life law on the books that would prohibit abortions if Roe v. Wade is ever overturned.
The two abortion advocacy groups, NARAL & Planned Parenthood, have been promoting the falsehood for months, claiming that women would be prosecuted if Roe is reversed, saying the abortion ban would be used to put women in jail; but the state law actually targets abortion practitioners. On 19June06, NARAL's Wisconsin affiliate put out a press release claiming that the abortion ban on the books "could be used to threaten women with up to 3-1/2 years in prison and fines up to $10,000."
"What these disingenuous pro-abortion organizations fail to tell the public is that Wisconsin has more than one law dealing with abortion on our lawbooks," Susan Armacost, WRL's legislative director, explained in a statement. The amended abortion ban (s. 940.04) that was in effect in WI when the Supreme Court handed down Roe, in 1973, would come back into effect.
"In 1985, a law, s. 940.13, was enacted that removed any and all pena
lties to women that were contained in s. 940.04," Armacost said. "We should know because Wisconsin Right to Life strongly supported and worked for the enactment of that law. "The truth is that when s.940.04 comes back into effect, no women will be penalized in any way for obtaining an abortion," Armacost added. "Wisconsin Right to Life demands that NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin and Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin issue an immediate retraction of these blatant falsehoods," she said.
Armacost said that Wisconsin Right to Life views women who have obtained abortions to be victims of the profit-oriented abortion industry, not criminals. Women who are considering an abortion are frequently either not told about or given incorrect information about their baby's development, abortion's risks and alternatives to abortions. She indicated numerous women who have had abortions, regret their decisions and now support the pro-life view work with her organization.
"These are our sisters in the pro-life movement who work tirelessly to prevent other women and their unborn babies from facing the tragedy of abortion," said Armacost. "They are not criminals."
Wisconsin Right to Life – http://www.wrtl.org [Ertelt, LifeNews.com June 19, 2006 Madison, WI]
LA GOV SIGNS ABORTION BAN. Gov Kathleen Blanco (D) signed into law on 17June a new statewide ban on abortions. The law prohibits all abortions except those necessary to save the mother's life and would not take effect until the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade. The measure would also become effective if a federal constitutional amendment is adopted that allows states to ban abortions. Blanco cited “overwhelming” bipartisan support for the measure in the state legislature: House 85-17, & rejected rape/incest exceptions by 67-36; Senate 31-6, & defeated exceptions 20-17. This abortion ban is different from the South Dakota ban that seeks to prohibit abortions now and is considered an attack on Roe. Dorinda Bordlee [long-time pro-life LA atty, VP, Bioethics Defense Fund] said other states should follow LA's lead to include a post-Roe activation clause, sometimes called a trigger clause. Under this SB 33, the Human Life Protection Act, an abortion practitioner who does an abortion would be fined from $10-100,000 and receive from 1-10 years in prison. The measure stipulates that women undergoing abortions would not be charged with any crime, and it excludes the prohibition of abortifacient drugs. [Gov Blanco – http://www.gov.state.la.us; LA State Legislature – http://legis.state.la.us; Bioethics Defense Fund – http://www.BDFund.org; AP; 2June06 LifeSiteNews.com; Lifenews.com, 19June06]
WICHITA ABORTION MILL SELLS OUT, HOLDS YARD SALE. After over 20 years, Central Women’s Services in Wichita, KS, has sold its business to an undisclosed buyer. The building they have occupied for two decades has also sold. The defunct abortion mill held a yard sale of business supplies, office equipment, and furniture on Friday, May 26, 2006. An Operation Rescue staffer attended the sale.
“There really wasn’t much there,” said Sullenger. “It was very dingy inside, and not particularly clean. Most of the items for sale had seen better days, for sure. It must have been a very depressing experience to have had an abortion at such a dumpy office. As I toured the building, I felt a real sense of loss for the babies that died there.”
Central Women’s Services was suffering financial difficulties in recent months, and was behind on their rent at the facility. It was open for abortions only about two days per month. For several years, abortionist Sherman Zaremski of Kansas City drove three hours to Wichita to kill babies for Central, but since January 31, 2006, the abortionist has been former Planned Parenthood employee Ronald Yeomans.
The abortion mill was the site of a Pastor’s Rescue during the Summer of Mercy in 1991, where over 80 pastors were arrested during a clinic blockade there. Central also made news in June, 2005, when Operation Rescue discovered that the bodies of babies aborted there were “processed” and dumped at a landfill in the Kansas City area. Operation Rescue had purchased the empty lot behind the abortion mill in 2003, and often parked a trailer with a billboard-sized banner that warned women of possible abortion complications. The banner was routinely vandalized. Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “We pray that Wichita’s better known abortuary, George Tiller’s Women’s Health Care Services, will be the next to close.” [Wichita, KS – May 26, 2006 http://www.operationrescue.org]
DAYTON WOMENS' CENTER OPERATES WITHOUT LICENSE. The clinic in Kettering, Ohio where partial birth abortions occur at the hands of Dr. Martin Haskell lost a round in its on going battle with the Ohio Department of Health over the issuance of a license to operate as an ambulatory surgical facility (ASF). On February 17 the Sixth Circuit Court ruled that a previous permanent injunction against an order from the ODH to cease and desist was vacated, with a caveat favoring Dr. Haskell and the Women’s Medial Professional Corporation, which operates the Women’s Medical Center of Kettering.
Judge Julie Smith Gibbons’ ruling read, in part “we affirm the district court with respect to its conclusion that WMPC’s procedural due process rights were violated, but vacate the grant of a permanent injunction and remand the case for a hearing on the proposed denial of the license application.”
Under Ohio law an ASF must meet the licensing requirements or apply for a waiver or variance of the requirement. The (ODH) director can grant a waiver only if “the director determines that the strict application of the license requirement would cause an undue hardship to the [health care facility] and that granting the waiver would not jeopardize the health and safety of any patient.”
In 2000 the Woman’s Medical Center applied for a license, but could not meet the requirements when both Grandview and Miami Valley hospitals refused to sign a patient transfer agreement with Dr. Haskell’s abortion clinic. The Women’s clinic then applied for a wavier from the licensing requirement, stating that Miami Valley Ho
spital Emergency and Trauma Center would receive patients from the Women’s Center with an “emergency medical condition.” In addition, Haskell said he had verbal agreements with a “five member obstetrics and gynecology group to provide back-up care.” According to court documents, Haskell would not name the group, at their request.
With the injunction overturned, Haskell is again operating his abortion on Stroop Road illegally. Attorney General Jim Petro’s office said “this is a good ruling” and will “keep fighting” but Christi Dodson, Director of Dayton Right to Life, is concerned the one caveat Judge Gibbons offered might give Haskell the window he’s been looking for. Initially, when he was refused a license, Haskell was not afforded the right to a hearing. Dodson is concerned the threat of a prolonged hearing might dissuade Dr. Baird from pursuing anything other then issuing a waiver.
“Pray and pray hard,” said Dodson when asked about a February 20 alert she sent out to pro-lifers. In the alert, called “Project Abortion Free Zone” Dodson applauded the ruling, reminding supporters “…Dr. Haskell…testified in this case that he ends 3000 innocent lives every year at his facility; and he believes his center does not need to meet the requirements of licensing for surgical facilities….”
To help shore up the efforts of the Ohio Department of Health, Dodson is directing Dayton Right to Life to focus its attention and volunteer and financial recourses “on this one issue right now. We are looking for volunteer researchers and financial assistance,” said Dodson.
According to Dodson, and confirmed by the court documents, close to 1000 letters were sent to the ODH in 2000, to close the clinic and enforce the law against operating without a license. Dodson added, “Looking back, Dayton Right to Life and Ohio Right to Life greatly influenced Dr. Baird (in the decision to order the clinic closed). We may soon encourage pro-lifers to begin the writing campaign again, but sees this “small window of opportunity “to do more than write letters at this time.
Dodson concluded, “I have to know in my mind that we have done everything we possibly can do and do it right. I don’t want to give him any option.” (Printed in the Christian Citizen, May edition)
Project: Abortion Free Zone
There is a very important development in our ongoing efforts to make Montgomery County an “Abortion Free Zone.” Through this opportunity we would see the closing of the last remaining abortion facility in our county!
The Women’s Med Center, owned and operated by Dr. Martin Haskell has remained open since 1983 despite countless attempts to end the “Killing in Kettering.” During this time, Haskell and his associates have performed an estimated 3500 abortions per year for a total of approximately 80,500 deaths. This location is well known nationally as being the facility where Haskell perfected his late term abortion procedure commonly called Partial Birth Abortion.
Through your persistent care, concern, and support, we have come to what will hopefully be a pivotal time in history: The Ohio Department of Health has recently informed us that they have notified the Women’s Med Center that they have 30 days to meet licensing requirements or their license to stay open will be revoked. On May 5, Haskell applied for a hearing with the Ohio Department of Health to plead his case. We feel this process will proceed quickly, and we need to be ready for this hearing and his closing!
According to a recent decision from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals this abortion clinic must, as a surgical facility, meet the requirement of a written transfer agreement from an area hospital—it is the law! In the past, Martin Haskell has been unable to obtain this agreement from any Dayton hospital. Up to this point he has successfully argued in court that he did not need to meet this requirement for licensure but this recent court decision puts an end to that strategy. [C. Dodson, Executive Director]
H.B. 228, Abortion Ban Hearing, June 13, 2006
Columbus—hundreds came to the hearing yesterday in either support of an abortion ban, or to protest the ban. Two panels of five persons for each side were permitted to testify in front of the Health Committee at the Statehouse. The pro-life testimonies were filled with medical and scientific experts showing proof of life as well as women sharing their heartfelt stories about their abortions and the pain they suffered before, during, and after. The pro-abortion panels consisted of Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) and National Abortion Rights Activist League (NARAL). Here is some of what our opposition testified to yesterday:
Planned Parenthood of Ohio’s Executive Director, Gary Dougherty, testified that he believes that conception begins when the embryo implants in the uterine wall, not when the egg is fertilized by the sperm. (This strategy of changing when conception begins (against science) gears up this movement to promote their new bill, introduced last month, “Ohio Prevention First,” in which Emergency Contraceptives (Morning After Pill or Plan B), are promoted. Ironically, these pills can be an abortifacient by not allowing an embryo to implant on the uterine wall.)
He was also asked if any abortions should be illegal, he said “no.” In a later question, he was asked if life should be protected, he said “yes.”
Kellie Copeland, the executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio evaded answering the question, “Is it life?” She was asked four times, and refused to directly answer the question. She also stated abortion was not death.
When asked about partial birth abortion, the panel denied its existence, even after Committee Chair Rep. White mentioned Dr. Martin Haskell’s testimony on his procedure before the U.S. Congress.
When asked if the abortion issue could stand on medical and scientific information alone, the answer from NARAL and PPFA was “No.” They felt that banning abortion infringed on their religious freedoms and was unconstitutional.
After the panels, there were 60 more witnesses who hoped to testify. Time allowed for only one more, and Denise Mackura from Ohio Right to Life was called to testify. Rep. White asked several questions about the drafting of the bill itself. Mackura confirmed that the bill as introduced would completely repeal or eliminate the effect of several current provisions of Ohio law that restrict abortion, which we do not want. Ohio Right to Life is currently working with the sponsor of this bill to create a “sub bill” that would correct this problem. She also stated, “Women deserve better than abortion,” “abortion is a public health issue,” “abortion does not solve poverty issues,” “at least one person dies during an abortion,” and “it is time to welcome t
he baby humans back in to our society.” Finally, because the opposition throughout the day promoted their new Ohio Prevention First Bill, Mackura was able to provide research from the Alan Guttmacher Institute (the “unofficial” research arm of PPFA), that showed no correlation between increasing contraceptives and lower abortion rates. Hence, she concluded, contraceptives do not solve the abortion issue.
[Dayton Right to Life, www.daytonlife.org]
PROFESSOR: CHILDREN BORN AFTER ABORTION BANNED HAD BETTER LIVES, EDUCATION. A university professor says children born after a nation banned abortion have better economic and educational success, showing abortion prohibitions help children. Cristian Pop-Eleches, a professor at Columbia University in New York, makes the observation in an article published in the Journal of Political Economy.
Pop-Elches says children born after a nation bans abortion have "significantly better" educational and labor market achievements than children born just before. To back up his contention, Pop-Elches points to Romania, which, as a communist nation, saw dictator Nicolae Ceausescu issue an executive order banning abortions and contraception. Previously abortions were a part of the nation's socialized health care plan and done at no cost. The next year after the ban was in place, the birth rate doubled. "Urban, educated women working in good jobs were more likely to have abortions prior to the policy change," explains Pop-Eleches. "So a higher proportion of children were born into urban, educated households after abortion became illegal."
Looking at births from before and after the abortion ban, Pop-Eleches found that children born after the ban were more likely to finish high school and to work in a more highly-skilled job. "The apparently surprising result of superior educational and labor outcomes of children born after the abortion ban can be explained by changes in the composition of women having children," writes Pop-Eleches.
"[The study] indicates that the positive effect due to changes in the composition of mothers having children more than outweighs all the other negative effects such a restriction might have had," he says.
Pop-Eleches accounts for the difference in short-term and long-term outcomes, suggesting that educated women in Romania changed their behavior more drastically as a result of the ban. [2Jun06, LifeNews.com, http://www.lifenews.com/nat2318.html; N Valko RB, 2Jun06]
INDUCED ABORTION AND PREMATURE BIRTH, especially extreme (22-28 wk) premature birth. ACOG continues to deny there there is credible literature validating this association (see 06 Compendium, see ACOG Brief on the Ayotte Supeme Court Case). And the March of Dimes, in their major initiative to find the causes of the preterm birth "epidemic," fails to even mention the word "abortion" in their poignant radio ads on the topic, or on their website entries discussing this major problem.
As a refresher, remember that the Australian data base of 250,000 births showed a 60% increase in extreme premature birth after one abortion (mostly suction curretage), and a 150% increase after 2 abortions, 460% increase after 3 abortions, and 800% increase after 4 or more abortions.
Over 50 studies show such an association, with "dose relationship."
So one would think ACOG and MOD would suggest looking into the association. But so far, nary a word, as far as we can tell. But since the Australians and Europeans have, in fact, looked into it, and come up with a strong association, we can legitimately ask whether extreme prematurity (22-28 wk) is a
problem worth our attention (and worth an informed consent discussion with the patient.)
The following is taken from a letter by Brent Rooney, Canadian medical literature researcher, found in European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology 2001;96:239-240:
In their excellent review of CP (Cerebral Palsy) history, Schifrin and Longo end with the words, "We need to let the truth take us where it will."(1) This letter assumes that there is the courage to do exactly that. Although the etiology of CP has many uncertainties, preterm birth and incompetent cervix are considered to be risk factors.(2) A preterm new-born is much more likely to be
Very Low Birth Weight (VLBW: birth weight under 1500 grams) than a full-term newborn.
A Swedish study of 19 year-old boys reported fifty-five times the normal risk of CP for boys with VLBW (95% CI 40.8-75.2).(3) From a 1991 CP-VLBW meta-analysis: "If one assumes the incidence of cerebral palsy in the general population to be 2/1000 live births …. then the relative risk for cerebral palsy among surviving VLBW infants would be 38 TIMES THAT IN THE GENERAL POPULATION. "(4)
There are at least seventeen (17) (Ed. Note: that was in 2001. Now over 50) studies that have found that previous induced abortions increase preterm birth risk.(8-24) The latest of these studies reported on 61,000 Danish women and is one of the largest studies ever linking "terminations" to later prematurity.(9) The relative risk of a very preterm birth (before 34 weeks' gestation) for Danish women with one previous induced abortion is 1.99. The relative risk of a pre-term birth for women with two previous "evacuation" type abortions is 12.55.(5) The RR for one previous "evacuation" abortion is 2.27.(5)
Why the silence about the abortion- prematurity risk and cerebral palsy from medical researchers?
Let's have the courage to explore this credible risk with the definite possibility that what is learned may help reduce the cerebral palsy rate and the heartache that it causes the affected infants and parents.
AAPLOG note: with the marked increase in extreme preterm birth (VLBW), which in itself gives rise to a marked increase in Cerebral Palsy, one would think the American medical minds would be interested in exploring this problem. Privacy issues can be easily circumvented by encoding SS numbers. But in the American system, we don't even have a data base for most abortions, as they are done in free standing clinics, for cash, and there
is essentially no long term followup. What an enlightened system-based on premeditated blindness and political correctness-and called, by the establishment,"reproduc
tive health care."
FYI: following are references for Brent Rooney's letter the European journal:
1 Schifrin BS, Longo LD. William John Little and
cerebral palsy A reappraisal. European J
Obstetrics & Gynecology 2000;90:139-144
2 Gersh ES. Children with Cerebral Palsy: a parent's
guide / edited by Elaine Geralis. 1998; chapter 1:
page 14 [Bethesda, Maryland: Woodbine House; ISBN
3 Ericson A, Kallen B. Very low birthweight boys
at 19. Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed 1998;78
4 Escobar GJ, Littenberg B, Petitti DB. Outcome
among surviving very low birthweight infants; a
meta-analysis. Arch Dis Child 1991;66:204-211
5 Luke B, Every Pregnant Woman's Guide to
Preventing Premature Birth (1995, pp. 32-33)
6 Muhlemann K, Germain M, Krohn M. Does an
Abortion Increase the Risk of Intrapartum
Infection in the Following Pregnancy? Epidem-
7 Daling JR, Krohn MA, Miscarriage or Termination
in the Immediately Preceding Pregnancy
Increases the Risk of Intraamniotic Infection
in the Following Pregnancy. American J Epi
1992;136:1013 [SER Abstracts]
8 Lumley J. The association between prior spon-
taneous abortion, prior induced abortion and
preterm birth in first singleton births.
Prenat Neonat Med 1998;3:21-24.
9 Zhou W, Sorenson HT, Olsen H. Induced Abortion
and Subsequent Pregnancy Duration. Obstetrics &
10 Pickering RM, Forbes J. Risk of preterm delivery
and small-for-gestational age infants following
abortion: a population study. British J Obstet-
rics and Gynecology 1985;92:1106-1112
11 Michielutte R, Ernest JM, Moore ML, Meis PJ,
Sharp PC, Wells HB, Buescher PA. A Comparison of
Risk Assessment Models for Term and Preterm Low
Birthweight. Preventive Medicine 1992;21:98-109
12 Berkowitz GS. An Epidemiologic Study of Preterm
Delivery. American J Epidemiology 1981;113:81-92
13 Lieberman E, Ryan KJ, Monson RR, Schoenbaum SC.
Risk Factors Accounting For Racial Differences
in the rate of premature birth. NEJM 1987;317:
14 Lang JM, Lieberman E, Cohen A. A Comparison
of Risk Factors for Preterm Labor and Term
Small-for-Gestational-Age Birth. Epidemiology
15 Mueller-Heubach E, Guzick DS. Evaluation of
risk scoring in a preterm birth prevention
study of indigent patients. Am J Obstetrics
& Gyn 1989;160:829-837
16 Shiono PH, Lebanoff MA. Ethnic Differences
and Very Preterm Delivery. Am J Public Health
17 Pantelakis SN, Papadimitriou GC, Doxiadis SA.
Influence of induced and spontaneous abortions
on the outcome of subsequent pregnancies. Amer
J Obstet Gynecol. 1973;116:799-805
18 Van Der Slikke JW, Treffers PE. Influence of
induced abortion on gestational duration in
subsequent pregnancies. BMJ 1978;1:270-272
19 Richardson JA, Dixon G. Effect of legal termin-
ation on subsequent pregnancy. British Med J
20 Pickering RM, Deeks JJ. Risks of Delivery during
20th to the 36th Week of Gestation. Intl. J
21 Koller O, Eikhom SN. Late Sequelae of Induced
Abortion in Primigravidae. Acta Obstet Gynecol
22 Papaevangelou G, Vrettos AS, Papadatos D, Alexiou
C. The Effect of Spontaneous and Induced Abortion
on Prematurity and Birthweight. The J Obstetrics
and Gynaecology of the British Commonwealth. May
23 Bognar Z, Czeizel A. Mortality and Morbidity
Associated with Legal Abortions in Hungary, 1960-
1973. AJPH 1976;66:568-575
24 Martius JA, Steck T, Oehler MK, Wulf K-H. Risk
factors associated with preterm (<37+0 weeks) and
early preterm (<32+0 weeks): univariate and multi-
variate analysis of 106 345 singleton births from
1994 statewide perinatal survey of Bavaira.
European J Obstetrics & Gynecology Reproductive
[May 26, 2006, AAPLOG]
'ANCEL-PAPIERNIK' ABSTRACT ON PRETERM BIRTH RISK
[Dr. Emile Papiernik was the head of a national French program that reduced the preterm birth rate of France by 52% (!!) between 1972 and 1989. There is no more respected preterm birth expert than Dr. Emile Papiernik]
The 'Ancel-Papiernik' abstract 
History of induced abortion as a risk factor for preterm birth in European countries; results of the EUROPOP survey. Pierre-Yves Ancel, Nathalie Lelong, Emile Papiernik, Marie-Josephe Saurel-Cubizolles and Monique Kaminski. Human Reproduction 2004;19(3):734-740
BACKGROUND: The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between history of induced
abortion and preterm delivery in various parts of Europe, and according to the main cause of preterm birth.
METHODS: We used data from a case-control survey, the EUROPOP study; 2938 preterm births and 4781 controls at term from ten European countries were included. Based on national statistics, we distinguished three groups of countries with high, intermediate and low rates of induced abortion.
RESULTS: Previous induced abortions were significantly associated with preterm delivery and the risk of preterm birth increased with the number of abortions. Odds ratios did not differ significantly between the three groups of countries. The extent of association with previous induced abortion varied according to the cause of preterm delivery. Previous induced abortions significantly increased the risk of preterm delivery after idiopathic preterm labour, preterm premature rupture of membranes and ante-partum haemorrhage, but not preterm delivery after maternal hypertension. The strength of associated increased with decreasing gestational age at birth.
CONCLUSIONS: Identifying subgroups of preterm births on the basis of the complications involved in delivery increases our understanding of the mechanisms by which previous induced abortion affects subsequent pregnancy outcomes.
[ end of abstact: Human Reproduction 2004;19(3):734-740
The countries included in this study: Germany, Finland, Scotland, Sweden, Italy, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Romania, Russia, and Hungary ]
["brent rooney" <[email protected]> October 06, 2004 2:51 PM
Abortion Shunners Get Insurance Discount. At least five health insurance companies in Switzerland give discounts to women who refuse abortions and in vitro fertilization, as well as prenatal diagnosis. The companies since 2004 have had an agreement with the anti-abortion association Swiss Aid for Mother and Child, according to the news service of the Jérôme Lejeune Foundation. The companies offer eligible women rate reductions of 10% to 40%, and thousands of people have signed these special contracts.
Josef Zisyadis, national adviser of the Popular Workers Party, recently spoke with a view to preventing these practices. But the Federal Council stated that it will not intervene against these insurance companies and urged the National Council to reject Zisyadis' motion. [5June06, ZENIT News Agency, ZE06060503, http://www.zenit.org/]
Baby left for dead is all grown up – She'll graduate high school a few miles from site of her rescue. The temperature outside on the night of Dec. 30, 1987, was 45 and dropping. Cold for most anyone, but perilous for a newborn baby girl wrapped in a towel and stuffed in a brown paper bag like trash.
She probably wasn't meant to be found alive. When Steve Gibbons, a California Highway Patrol officer, pulled off Interstate 280 to stop and stretch his legs, she was just hours old. Her temperature had plummeted to a dangerous 90 degrees. If she had been there much longer, she would have died near the intersection of Cañada and Edgewood roads in Redwood City. But Gibbons heard the baby's cry.
Now the abandoned infant has grown up. Ashley Wyrick, 18, will graduate 9June from Sequoia High School, 4 miles from where she was left in the bag. She says she sometimes wonders why she was set by the side of the road and where her biological mother might be. But in her mind, it was fate. "It makes me feel like I'm here for a reason. I'm here to do something with my life,'' said Ashley, who will attend the University of Arizona in the fall on a scholarship. "I'm not here to sit around and cry and waste my time thinking about what happened to me.'' Ashley says she's survived crueler fates: the death of her adoptive dad and the torment by young classmates who teased her about being abandoned.
The police report in 1987 listed her as Baby Jane Doe. The nurses at Redwood City's Sequoia Hospital, who cared for the brown-haired, blue-eyed baby, called her Miraculous Mary.
"The chance of her being found in that area at that hour of the night was nothing short of a miracle,'' said Sheryl Greenspan, who was among the nurses who tended to the abandoned baby.
After hearing about Miraculous Mary, dozens of families called the hospital in hopes of adopting her. Within weeks, she was placed in foster care with Leo and Kathy Wyrick, a Redwood City couple with grown children, who named her Ashley.
Greenspan thought she never would see Miraculous Mary again and that the baby might never know what had what happened after her birth, so she crafted two albums filled with every photograph and newspaper article written about the baby's inauspicious entry into the world. A social worker kept her promise and delivered one of the albums to the baby's new family. Greenspan kept the other for herself.
Ashley charmed the Wyricks just as she had charmed the Sequoia nurses. After a year as her foster parents, they legally adopted her, choosing Gibbons, the officer who found her, to be her godfather.
A few years later, the Wyricks' stormy marriage ended in divorce. Leo Wyrick got sole custody of Ashley. Those who knew them said the father and daughter were inseparable. Their life was simple. He was a carpenter, and she'd follow him around picking up his sawdust. Ashley created sawdust pies, and Leo pretended to eat them. He'd make reindeer planters for Christmas presents, and she'd paint the noses.
Ashley was about 6 years old and rummaging through a closet when she found the album meticulously made by Greenspan. It told her story, but she was too young to understand, and no one tried to explain. Still, she loved leafing through the album, looking at pictures of herself held by the nurses and Gibbons.
She was 8 when Leo Wyrick was diagnosed with a brain tumor and given just two months to live. Ashley was told only that her dad was very sick. Along with her adoptive sister, Serene Olliges, Leo Wyrick's grown daughter from a previous marriage, Ashley helped take care of him as best she could. She cleaned the house, helped cook dinner and bought his favorite pies at the store.
And quietly she hoped he would get better.
Leo Wyrick lived more than a year longer than the doctors said he would but died in 1996. Ashley was 9. Olliges, who now goes by the last name of Herrmann, became her legal guardian and mother.
Still, Ashley missed her dad immensely.
"He was my best friend. I tried to shut everyone else out,'' she said. "I stopped wan
ting to be around people at school because everyone would ask about it."
She struggled with school. Kids who had known about her tale of survival teased her. And for the first time, when Ashley was about 10 years old, Herrmann told her what really happened the night she was born.
"I was in shock and at the same time confused,'' Ashley recalled.
A child psychologist told Herrmann that Ashley needed a new start, and in seventh grade she enrolled in a new school across town and told no one that she was the miracle baby who'd been in all the newspapers.
"It was like starting a new chapter, and no one knew about my past,'' Ashley said.
Ashley even looked like Herrmann and her daughter Kelly — who is three years older than Ashley — and the questions and teasing stopped. Still, the school's heritage day was coming up, and Ashley arrived home in tears one day because she didn't know where her parents had come from.
"I remember telling her: 'You are what we are. You are a little German girl,' " Herrmann recalled. " 'You are going to wear your dirndl and be a little German girl.' ''
Herrmann says she and Ashley haven't spent much time lamenting the fact that she was left on the side of the road.
"She's never been 'Poor Ashley.' We don't really talk about how many times she's been abandoned. She knows she's really loved, and we don't dwell on it," said Herrmann.
During her freshman year in high school, Ashley got more bad news. Herrmann had been diagnosed with advanced breast cancer, and Ashley once again faced the fear of losing a parent.
"It was hard, and I spent a lot of time at home trying to make her feel better,'' said Ashley. "I stayed so close to her. I was afraid of what would happen if I didn't. I saw my dad go through this, and I didn't want to see my mom go through it."
The rigorous chemotherapy and radiation regime paid off. Herrmann beat the breast cancer.
Herrmann promised to be around for a good while longer, and Ashley was able to spend the last few years being what she says she always wanted to be — a normal kid. When she's not studying, she participates in the school dance group and for the past year has served on Sequoia's student advisory board.
Those who know her best say the same thing: She's a hard worker who is remarkably well-adjusted, happy and liked by all.
"I'm so proud of her … she's an extraordinary person, and I'm not just saying that because she's my little girl,'' said Herrmann.
Lauren Reibstein, activities director at Sequoia, said Ashley is a standout volunteer on campus, showing up early and staying late to help out at school events.
"She is so together and down-to-earth and easygoing and happy. You would never know there was any hardship or story behind it,'' said Reibstein. "She's the perfect example of someone who overcomes obstacles."
Only a handful of people on campus knew about Ashley's past until last month, when details about her abandonment emerged during a school project and began to circulate around the high school campus.
Ashley discovered that Greenspan, the nurse who put together her album and cared for her in the critical hours after her birth, had never been very far away. Two of Greenspan's daughters attend Sequoia, and their mother had often showed them the album and told them the story about Miraculous Mary.
Ashley and Greenspan even met once while both volunteered at a campus event, but they hadn't known enough about each other to make the connection. Although the two have lived only a few miles apart for the past 18 years, Miraculous Mary finally reunited with Nurse Greenspan two weeks ago.
"She looked at me, and I looked at her, and we just hugged each other,'' recalled Greenspan, "I always wanted to know she was well. … She was a strong baby right from the beginning."
Last week, Ashley sent Greenspan and Gibbons invitations in the mail, asking them to come to her high school graduation and party.
"In December 1987, she brought me an incredible gift, and she's brought a whole new fat gift to me now,'' said Greenspan.
At the University of Arizona, Ashley plans to major in psychology and English. She thinks one day she'll write a book about her story. "Given the circumstances under which I was found," she said, "it's hard to believe it was not a miracle."
Safely Surrendered Baby Law
California and most other states allow a parent or person with lawful custody to surrender a newborn baby at a hospital or fire station without fear of prosecution. Since California's Safely Surrendered Baby Law went into effect in 2001, more than 120 newborns have been dropped off legally. For more information, go to www.babysafe.ca.gov/ [San Francisco Chronicle, Page A – 1 Diana Walsh, 6June06