An abortion clinic in Pennsylvania's capital city has been cited for allegedly violating state health laws for the fourth time in six years, including new allegations that patients weren't properly monitored while recovering from anesthesia.
A woman who answered the phone at Hillcrest Women's Health Center in Harrisburg on Friday declined comment on the alleged violations first reported Thursday by Pennlive.com.
The state Department of Health recently publicized the results of a February inspection that found the clinic didn't have a registered nurse on staff or proof that its doctor is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology.
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The clinic has until Aug. 31 to fix the alleged problems. Department records indicate the clinic has since hired a registered nurse, plans to provide proof of board certification for its doctor, and will complete background checks on at least eight workers who didn't have state clearance to treat patients under 18. Hillcrest also has assured state regulators that it has thrown away expired medications.
The February inspection also found records from 12 abortion patients showing none received nursing care or monitoring while recovering from anesthesia and the files of seven such patients didn't include any anesthesia records. The clinic records also indicated that patients' blood types weren't tested or recorded before surgical abortions, the inspection found.
The inspection found some medications were stored for more than a year after their expiration dates and that 20 swabs for chlamydia and gonorrhea had expired in 2004. Seven needles and syringes were so old that their paper wrappings ``were physically deteriorated and yellow with age,'' the inspection report said.
The expired medicine violations were repeat offenses, the report said.