Toledo —This afternoon, pro-choice Toledoans delivered a petition signed by 5,000 activists to ProMedica CEO Randy Oostra. If ProMedica continues to refuse to sign a transfer agreement with Capital Care Network, Toledo could lose its only remaining abortion provider.
NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio Foundation Executive Director Kellie Copeland said: “I know ProMedica would prefer to remain neutral on abortion and I am appalled that Governor Kasich has put them in this position. However, ProMedica must either sign a transfer agreement with Capitol Care Network, or admit they are a part of a Kasich’s quiet strategy to eliminate abortion access in Ohio.”
Transfer agreements do not cost hospitals any money and they do not obligate them to provide abortion care. By signing a transfer agreement, ProMedica would simply be affirming that they will do what is already required under federal law — treat any patient that is transferred to them in a medical emergency.
Copeland continued: “Once a woman has made the decision to end a pregnancy, she needs access to safe and legal health care in her community. ProMedica does not offer abortions — we’re not asking them to — but they should not stand in the way of women seeking care.”
Ohio law requires ambulatory surgical facilities to obtain a transfer agreement with a local hospital. Governor Kasich banned public hospitals from providing those agreements to abortion providers in 2013. This was a politically-motivated move to abuse his regulatory authority and force abortion clinics to close. As a result, the University of Toledo Medical Center was no longer permitted to provide transfer agreements to abortion providers. The Center for Choice was immediately forced to close, leaving Toledo with only one abortion provider: Capitol Care Network.
Capitol Care Network challenged Kasich’s medically-unnecessary scheme all the way to the Supreme Court of Ohio. Oral arguments were heard on September 12, 2017, and a ruling by the majority Republican court could come at any time. If Capitol Care Network loses their court challenge, they will be forced to close their doors — unless ProMedica signs a transfer agreement with them.
Facebook live video of our protest and petition delivery: https://www.facebook.com/NARALProChoiceOhio/videos/1734465453244822/