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OPINION - The abortion law

by Chris Conley

NEWS BLOG (WSAU) When my daughter was much younger she needed to have an ear tube removed. One had become partially dislodged and there was a chance it would damage her ear drum. It was a delicate but routine procedure. It was done in a hospital. Of course our Ear-Nose-Throat doctor had hospital privileges, although the vast majority of his work was done in his regular medical office.

Now consider a doctor who performs abortions. Its a highly evasive procedure. There are risks of complications. Here are the statistics from the (pro-abortion) National Abortion Federation: for first-trimester abortions, there are complications in 0.5% of all procedures. In the second trimester, where more are performed under general anesthesia, the complication-rate increases to about 2%. Something out-of-the-ordinary will happen to between 1-in-200 and 1-in-50 abortion patients. Many of those situations can be resolved through regular follow-up care. Some require hospitalization. But considering there are 1.3-million abortions in the U.S. each year, the 'complication number' is small but substantial.

Considering those statistics, a state law requiring doctors to perform abortions to have hospital admitting privileges is completely reasonable. That law comes up for a federal court challenge today. The question is whether a proper medical regulation will be struck down because everything about abortion is political.

Many doctors who perform abortions arent affiliated with a hospital. In Wisconsin, abortion clinics in Appleton and Milwaukee dont meet the laws requirements.

Regardless of whether you are pro-life or pro-choice, this is a matter of patient safety. When I see a doctor, one of my basic expectations is that they can get me to a hospital if something goes wrong. If I knew otherwise, I wouldnt let that doctor near me.

This is common sense. Lets see if federal judge William Conley agrees.

Chris Conley

Image: An abortion protest/REUTERS via wsau.com