St. Louis, Mo., Dec 1, 2022 / 15:15 pm (CNA).
Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita has asked the state’s medical licensing board to discipline an abortion doctor, Caitlin Bernard, who in June performed an abortion on a 10-year-old rape victim who traveled from Ohio to Indiana.
“Based on the physician’s own testimony under oath, she violated federal and Indiana law related to patient privacy and the reporting of child abuse,” the Republican AG said in a Nov. 30 statement.
Bernard, who already was known for her pro-abortion activism in Indiana, drew worldwide media attention to herself when she disclosed to the Indianapolis Star details about the abortion she performed on the child in late June, whom she did not name. Ohio has a “heartbeat” abortion law in place, which took effect after the June 24 overturning of Roe v. Wade, whereas Indiana at the time allowed abortions until 22 weeks’ gestation.
Rokita contended that “simply concealing the patient’s name falls far short of her legal and ethical duties here.”
“Dr. Bernard violated the law, her patient’s trust, and the standards for the medical profession when she disclosed her patient’s abuse, medical issues, and medical treatment to a reporter at an abortion rights rally to further her political agenda,” Rokita said.
Rokita said Bernard also “failed to immediately report” the abuse and rape of a child to Indiana authorities, as required under Indiana law. Bernard, through her attorneys, has stated that she reported the minor’s abortion to the relevant state agencies before the legally mandated deadline to do so, which in Indiana’s case is three days. Rokita contends, though, that a child abuse report should have been made to Indiana authorities within four hours so that the state could ensure the child was not being returned to an unsafe situation in Ohio.
“As the Office of the Attorney General, it is our duty to ensure that doctors meet the standard of care. In our opinion, Dr. Bernard fell short in this situation,” Rokita concluded.
“Now, it is up to the Medical Licensing Board to determine whether there are consequences for violating a patient’s privacy rights and the obligation to immediately report child abuse to Indiana authorities.”
Bernard testified last week that she had confirmed that child abuse authorities in Ohio were actively investigating the case before the girl arrived in Indiana for the abortion, and her attorneys contend that that satisfies the requirements of Indiana law, Law&Crime reported.
Since the abortion, a 27-year-old Ohio man has been charged with raping the girl.
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