« From the Makers of Today's Papers | Main | Treasury Dept Being Used to Spin Shrub's Lies »

February 25, 2005

Kansas AG "Protecting" Women By Denying Them Privacy

The horrific AG Phill Kline, who in my opinion should have his law license revoked, is demanding the personal medical files of hundreds of women because they committed the "crime" of having an abortion.

Jodi Wilgoren with contributions from Gretchen Ruethling reports the horror in the NYT:

Attorney General Phill Kline, a Republican who has made fighting abortion a staple of his two years in the post, is demanding the complete medical files of scores of women and girls who had late-term abortions, saying on Thursday that he needs the information to prosecute criminal cases. ...

Noting that personal details like marital status, race, employment history and emergency contacts are in the records, lawyers for the clinics asked, "How can a woman's method of birth control or prior history of abortions or use of drugs and medications be relevant?"

The brief, which provided the first glimpse into a yearlong battle whose records have been sealed, said the laws cited as the basis for the subpoenas are one that restricts abortions after 22 weeks of pregnancy and another that requires health professionals to report suspected child abuse.

When Mr. Kline was in the legislature, he helped write the 22-week limit.

Although Mr. Kline emphasized statutory rape in his news conference, many here on both sides of the abortion debate said they suspected that his real target was doctors who provide late-term abortions. ...

Despite that law passed in 1998, Kansas has become a national magnet for late-term abortions because of a doctor in Wichita who performs hundreds of them each year. The doctor, George Tiller, funneled at least $150,000 through political action committees to Mr. Kline's opponent in the attorney general's race in 2002, and his clinic, Women's Health Care Services, is one of the two whose records are being subpoenaed.

P.J. Huffstutter writes about the situation in the LAT:
Lawyers for the clinics said a gag order, issued by Anderson, prevented them from discussing the case.

The order also blocked the clinics from letting patients know that their records would be released, said Elizabeth Herbert, a lawyer for one of the clinics.

"That's an outrageous violation of privacy," said Kim Gandy, president of the National Organization for Women.

Emphasis added.

Posted by cj at February 25, 2005 9:47 AM

Trackback Pings

TrackBack URL for this entry:


It seems like forcing clinics to release patient information like that would be a violation of medical ethics, doesn't it?

Posted by: The Chemist at February 27, 2005 7:38 PM

Post a comment

Thanks for signing in, . Now you can comment. (sign out)

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

Remember me?