Del. Agencies Propose Greater Oversight of Abortion Clinics

February 8, 2011 — Delaware officials on Friday sent a letter to state lawmakers calling for legislation that would permit their agencies' officials to define the parameters for unsafe or unsanitary conditions in medical offices where invasive procedures are performed and allow them to conduct unscheduled inspections of clinics, the Wilmington News Journal reports. If problems are discovered within a practice, the professional regulations division would develop a course for corrective action or discipline.

In the letter, Division of Public Health Director Karyl Rattay and Delaware Division of Professional Regulations Director James Collins cautioned lawmakers to be wary of unintended consequences, such as the singling out of medical offices where abortion procedures are performed or the creation of a "large bureaucracy." Several state officials and lawmakers -- including Gov. Jack Markell (D), Sen. Bethany Hall-Long (D) and Sen. Colin Bonini (R), who opposes abortion -- welcomed the letter's suggestions. Bonini praised the effort as "proactive" (Parra, Wilmington News Journal, 2/5).