Missouri’s lone abortion clinic loses license to perform procedure

Planned Parenthood in Missouri, the only abortion clinic in the state, lost its license on Friday to perform the procedure, but a judge has ordered the clinic remain open and will allow it to continue performing abortions until a final ruling has been reached.

Republican Gov. Mike Parson, who banned all abortions after eight weeks of pregnancy — the only exception involves health complications, not rape or incest — said in a statement the clinic had “failed to meet basic standards of care, placed multiple patients in life-threatening situations, performed multiple failed abortions where patients remained pregnant, and intentionally impeded the state’s health investigation by not allowing health inspectors to talk to the abortion doctors.”

PLANNED PARENTHOOD PLANS TO DEFY MISSOURI LAW, ENDANGERING STATE’S LAST ABORTION CLINIC, REPORT SAYS

Earlier this month, anti-abortion advocates gather outside the Planned Parenthood clinic in St. Louis. Missouri's only abortion clinic. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

Earlier this month, anti-abortion advocates gather outside the Planned Parenthood clinic in St. Louis. Missouri’s only abortion clinic. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)

The Missouri health department notified Planned Parenthood the license would not be renewed because it had failed to correct 30 deficiencies identified by the department during inspections, Dr. Randall Williams, director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, said at a press conference.

Additionally, health department investigators said the clinic was responsible for three “failed abortions” requiring additional surgeries and a fourth that led to life-threatening complications for the mother, The Associated Press reported this week, citing a now-sealed court filing.

The state agency allowed the clinic’s license to lapse as of June 1, but St. Louis Circuit Judge Michael Stelzer said the health department had to make a definitive decision on whether or not the license would be renewed on Friday.

M’Evie Mead, director of Planned Parenthood Advocates in Missouri claims the licensing battle is just an excuse for the conservative state government to impede on abortion rights in Missouri, one of the states across the nation flirting with the legislation that will force the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade.

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The health department’s restrictions on Planned Parenthood makes Missouri the first state since 1974, the year after the court’s landmark ruling, without a functioning abortion clinic if it does close.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.