Orlando abortion clinic fined for non-compliance


An Orlando abortion clinic is contesting a hefty fine that could shut it down. Lucerne Terrace. The Agency for Health Care Administration alleges the abortion clinic failed to meet the state’s 24-hour waiting period. Florida made the waiting period mandatory in 2015. The law was immediately challenged in court. But last April, a Tallahassee judge upheld the law. The Agency for Healthcare Administration said patient records show procedures were “performed on the same day” 193 times in April and May. Under state law, the agency can fine an abortion clinic up to $1,000 for each violation. So now he’s offering the clinic to pay $193,000. In a court response, the clinic’s lawyer, Julie Gallagher, disputes the allegations and said the fine would “probably bankrupt” the clinic and “put it out of business”. In an email, Gallagher told WESH 2 News, “Shortly after the judge’s decision allowing the 24-hour waiting period to go into effect, the AHCA began investigating the clinics of state abortion to comply with the new requirement. The AHCA never provided guidance to clinics on the “start date” of the new law and arbitrarily chose a date in late April. The AHCA alleges the Center of Orlando for Women was non-compliant for approximately two weeks. The clinic disputes this as well as the excessive fine requested, $193,000. In Gallagher’s response to the court, she said the abortion clinic tried to comply with the law by repeatedly contacting the Agency for Health Care Administration to find out when the waiting period for 24 hours would take effect, but adds that the Agency for Health Care administrative staff did not have that information, nor did the agency’s website. The Agency for Healthcare Administration told WESH 2 News it does not comment on ongoing litigation.

An Orlando abortion clinic is contesting a hefty fine that could shut it down.

Last week, Florida’s state agency that oversees the licensing and regulation of abortion clinics, the Agency for Health Care Administration, filed an administrative complaint against the Center of Orlando. for Women on Lucerne Terrace.

The Agency for Health Care Administration alleges the abortion clinic failed to meet the state’s 24-hour waiting period. Florida made the waiting period mandatory in 2015. The law was immediately challenged in court. But last April, a Tallahassee judge upheld the law.

The Agency for Healthcare Administration said patient records show procedures were “performed on the same day” 193 times in April and May. Under state law, the agency can fine an abortion clinic up to $1,000 for each violation. So now he’s offering the clinic to pay $193,000.

In a court response, the clinic’s lawyer, Julie Gallagher, disputes the allegations and said the fine would “probably bankrupt” the clinic and “put it out of business”.

In an email, Gallagher tells WESH 2 News: “Shortly after the Tallahassee judge’s ruling allowing the 24-hour waiting period to go into effect, the AHCA began investigating abortion clinics across the state to comply with the new requirement. The AHCA never provided guidance to clinics on the “start date” of the new law and arbitrarily chose a date in late April. The AHCA alleges the Center of Orlando for Women was non-compliant for approximately two weeks. The clinic disputes this as well as the excessive fine requested, $193,000.

In Gallagher’s response to the court, she said the abortion clinic tried to comply with the law by repeatedly contacting the Agency for Health Care Administration to find out when the waiting period for 24 hours would take effect, but adds that the Agency for Health Care administrative staff did not have that information, nor did the agency’s website.

The Agency for Healthcare Administration told WESH 2 News it does not comment on ongoing litigation.


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