VA Board Of Health Passes Modified Abortion Regulations

The Virginia Board of Health offered a rare bright spot lately in the war on reproductive rights, voting to improve a draft of permanent regulations governing health care centers providing five or more fist-trimester abortions per year.

In a 7-4 vote the Board decided to amend the proposed regulations to “grandfather in” existing women’s health care centers so they are not required to meet new architectural standards required under the TRAP law. “We are very pleased that the Board of Health chose to follow the advice provided by medical experts.  This is a vote on the side of women’s health and well-being in Virginia,” said Katherine Greenier, Director of the ACLU of Virginia’s Patricia M. Arnold Women’s Rights Project.  “Abortion care has been safely and effectively provided by many health care centers in the state for years and it is reassuring to know these existing providers will be able to continue delivering their services throughout the Commonwealth.”

The requirements threatened to put existing clinics out of business as the cost to modify facilities could reach millions of dollars, yet those requirements bear no correlation to the delivery of safe and affective health care to women.

Unfortunately though new facilities will still have to meet the requirements, which means it is very unlikely any new clinics will be opening in the state of Virginia anytime soon. And other controversial measures that expose clinics and patients to unannounced raids by the government did pass as well. “We are, however, disappointed the Board of Health did not amend the proposed regulations to provide stronger safeguards for patient and provider safety and confidentiality,” added Greenier.  “Patients have been targets for harassment outside of women’s health centers and there is a long history of anti-choice activists seeking patient information in order to deter women from obtaining vital reproductive health care.  During the public comment period, we ask members of the public to demand women’s privacy rights, and we will urge Gov. McDonnell to amend the regulations to provide such protections.”

The fight is not over. The regulations are now open for public comment where they can be amended again prior to final adoption. Contact Gov. McDonnelll and demand Virginia respect the privacy of the 1 in 3 women in that state who will need abortion care at sometime during her life.

Related Stories:

Author Of VA Abortion Regs Takes Name Off Final Draft

Clinics May Close Because Of Virginia Anti-Abortion Regs

Photo from infowidget via flickr.


Winn Adams
Winn A5 years ago


Mari Garcia
Mari Garcia5 years ago

I find it funny that people expect adults to not have sex to avoid an unwanted pregnancy. If a couple is married should they not have sex if they can't afford a child? How about birth control and minding your own business if the bc fails? Abortion should not be up to debate, it's a personal choice not something that public needs to put its opinion on.

Jennifer C.
Past Member 5 years ago


Pamela H.
Pamela H5 years ago

Abstinence and the sale of Viagra do not go together. Pity men didn't have the babies, they'd have a completely different opinion on the topic of pregnancy terminations.

Belle Rita N.
Belle Rita N.5 years ago

A friend just today told me that she was told that her grandmother (my friend is 81) had 9 children, tried to self abort with her 10th, and died from complications. That is the reality folks when abortion is not legal. Women who do not want to be pregnant, and who are desperate will try almost anything to not have the child. Always have, always will.

Ken W.
Ken W5 years ago

Just say NO has never and will never work if it did thair would be NO gop !

Karen Swenson
Karen S5 years ago

John M how much abstinence have you done in your life! You seem to forget that when Birth control/abortion wasn't available to women MEN were whining about frigid wives and how miserable their lives were with a frigid wife who had to use abstinence to protect her life! Thus it was acceptable for men to go elsewhere for sex--poor guy, and who could blame him was the popular cry!! Women were just unreasonable in their quest for trying to keep from getting pregnant! I would like to know when in the living HELL were men ever expected to have any form of responsibility for sex and the consequences. Here again we (Women) must never make a mistake, never have sex, or have any complications, or seek to correct whatever happens to us in this world without condemnation and blame and shame and legal action! You Men walk free with your prescriptions of Viagra!! Who in the Hell are you going to use it on if abstinence is the name of the game!!

BMutiny TCorporationsAreE

In the '50's, when abortion was illegal, I and my partner and several of our friends, were part of a NETWORK that women could contact, to get fairly-safe-but-illegal abortions done by University of Washington Medical Students, on a certain floor of a certain Hotel in downtown Seattle. {But you had to know somehow about whom to contact.}

During that same time period, WEALTHY PEOPLE sent their Wives, Daughters, and Mistresses TO CUBA UNDER THE BATISTA REGIME, to get abortions outside the U.S.
My GRANDMOTHER, a MARRIED WOMAN, had an {illegal} abortion after having 3 children, and couldn't afford a fourth child.

Ria T.
Ria T5 years ago

My mother had at least 3 backstreet abortions before they were legal. [She could think of sex and get pregnant and got pregnant every contraception repeatedly.] She would come home gray and shaking to hemorrhage. It was scary. Later on, after she remarried, she had 12 children and several miscarriages. As she said, "No one ever--not once--offered to help me with money or caring for my kids, but men sure told me not have an abortion." meaning the church to which she belonged. The personal is the political. Gloria Steinem was right. May we all be kinder to ourselves and each other.

Amanda M.
Amanda M5 years ago

John M, STFU about abstinence! Abstinence does NOTHING to help marital relations, and women use contraception not only to plan and space their families, but also to control the symptoms of chronic medical conditions such as endometriosis, polycystic ovarian syndrome, fibroids, and severe menstrual symptoms that can literally cripple a woman for a week or two each month! You'd probably tell these women to shut up and suck it up, because "it's all in our heads!" Well, BULLSHIT on that one! Not only that, but contraception failure notwithstanding, women can get RAPED. All the abstinence in all the world won't stop her from getting pregnant if the bastard rapes her at the wrong time in her cycle!

Sandy E, women get abortions not just because of rape or incest or life-threatening reasons, but also because of contraception failure, being unable to financially/physically/mentally/emotionally handle the strain a child or another child would throw into their lives, wanting to complete their education or get their career off the ground before having kids, or because of a genetic or physical deformity that is INCOMPATIBLE WITH LIFE showing up during routine prenatal testing. NONE of these reasons are "just because"-they are all VALID reasons for opting to abort, and no woman chooses to abort without some serious thought on the matter first!

Against abortion? Then don't have one. However, you have NO right to stop me from exercising MY control over MY own body!