The Lebanon Road Surgery Center, also known as Women's Med, will not appeal Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Jerome Metz Jr’s stay on their case, according to clinic's attorney.
The abortion clinic, located in Sharonville, had five days to appeal Metz’s ruling to appeal or it would be prohibited from performing surgical abortions.
The clinic's attorney, Dorothea Langsam, said the clinic has decided not to appeal the order and will stop performing surgical abortions Friday.
The abortion clinic is one of two in Greater Cincinnati. It was denied a state license renewal by the Ohio Department of Health for not meeting the requirements for license renewal.
"Abortion access is now severely endangered for Cincinnati are women with only one provider remaining. This sole provider is also soon to be closed if Governor Kasich has his way," company representative Valerie Haskell said. "The governor's agenda is to methodically close each abortion provider one by one until it is impossible to get an abortion anywhere in Ohio. Over the last 18 months, almost half of the Ohio abortion providers have either closed or at risk of closing."
Under a previous Ohio law, abortion clinics must have a transfer agreement with a local hospital in order to treat patients with any complications after an abortion. In July 2013, the law changed and clinics were no longer allowed to get a transfer agreement from a state-funded hospital.
Planned Parenthood in Southwest Ohio said if a transfer agreement is denied, clinics can apply for a variance. A variance is a group of physicians with privileges at certain hospitals who agree to treat any woman in need of medical attention after an abortion.
Women's Med submitted a variance to the Ohio Department of Health but it was denied, which is why it was in the appeals process.
"This fight has everything to do with politics and absolutely nothing to do with patient safety or care," Haskell said. "This is what happens when a politician becomes blinded by his personal beliefs. He governs for the minority and disregards the majority. The Department of Health is being manipulated and commandeered by the Governor's office. We are now required by them to have a transfer agreement with a local hospital. But, a new law passed during the Kasich administration states public hospitals are not permitted to enter into such a transfer agreement. It is a classic 'Catch 22.'"
The Lebanon Road Surgery Center held a press conference at noon Wednesday to announce its decision not to appeal the revocation of its license to perform surgical abortions.
Langsam said the clinic is looking into the possibility of performing non-surgical abortions.
"Although the governor has created an elaborate and expensive obstacle course for women who choose to exercise their legal right to an abortion, we will do everything we can to accommodate these women," Haskell said. "We intend to see patients for the first day of their two day procedure in Cincinnati. Then they will have to travel to Dayton for the actual surgery. We understand that this imposes a great financial burden on many of our patients, half of whom fall at or below the Federal poverty level."
Clinic officials said Women's Med has operated in Sharonville for almost four years and prior to that it operated out of Clifton for 32 years.