DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Dayton leaders are calling on local hospitals to help save the Miami Valley’s only abortion clinic. Wednesday morning, the City Commission approved an informal resolution, calling on Premier Health and Kettering Health Network to sign a transfer agreement with the Women’s Med Center.
“We’re trying to encourage that woman have access to health care — any care that they need. With the closing of the Women’s Med Center, that would be a challenge for folks,” said Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley.
The Ohio Department Health is requesting the abortion clinic be shut down because no complying with the state rule.
Abortion clinics are required to have a written agreement with a non-state hospital within 30 miles, stating the hospital agrees to take of care of a clinic patient during a medical emergency.
An appeals court recently ruled against the Women’s Med Center when it requested a waiver of the required transfer agreement.
Wednesday, more than a dozen pro-choice advocates testified in favor of the City Commission’s resolution.
Some called the transfer agreement requirement “medically unnecessary” and a “political ploy,” saying the burden would fall on women if the clinic closed.
Kelley Freeman, the state field manager for NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio said, “It means that patients will have to leave the Dayton-area, they may have to leave the state, depending on the gestation of the pregnancy or on waiting times for other clinics in the state.”
Pro-life advocates also testified against the resolution, claiming the clinic already poses a risk to women’s health. Some say there would be better health care options if it did close.
“That would give us the opportunity to actually provide more comprehensive health care for women. Let’s get them into facilities that really want them to thrive — and their child thrive,” said Margie Christie, the executive director of Dayton Right to Life.
If no hospital signs a transfer agreement this week, the Women’s Med Center plans to go to the Ohio Supreme Court. The filing for an appeal is due this Friday, May 10.