The Richmond-Times Dispatch reports today that “a draft of emergency Virginia Department of Health regulations that could effectively force the closure of most of the state’s abortion clinics is expected to be made public Friday, a week ahead of schedule.”
As readers are aware by now, these new regulations come after abortion opponents used political maneuvering to amend an unrelated bill during this year’s General Assembly session.
NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia’s executive director, Tarina Keene discussed the new regulations with the Times-Dispatch, highlighting the need to protect access for Virginia women:
Tarina Keene, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, said advocates are concerned that the draft regulations will be similar to regulations passed in South Carolina, which she described as “very heavy on structural requirements we consider to be overly burdensome for first-trimester abortion procedures.”
She said the South Carolina regulations also require the full-time staffing of a registered nurse during all hours clinics are open, even on days when abortions and other surgical procedures are not being performed.
“We really hope they will adopt regulations that allow the clinics to continue to offer the care they are currently offering,” Keene said. “And that the regulations are based on health needs and sound medical science, not ideology and politics.”
Please stay tuned to this blog tomorrow as we will let you know what the draft regulations are as soon as we see them.