Fire Marshall Ignores Danger of Broken Elevator at Abortion Clinic Where Patient Died

SeeNoEvilHearNoEvil

Pro-life groups demand Preterm’s immediate closure — again!

By Cheryl Sullenger

Cleveland, Ohio – Despite indisputable evidence that a broken elevator at Preterm, a Cleveland abortion clinic, contributed to delays in emergency care for two patients, including Lakisha Wilson, who died of a fatal abortion at Preterm last year, the Fire Marshall has concluded that “no serious life safety violations were found” during a recent inspection.

[View Fire Marshall’s Report]

The inspection was prompted by a formal complaint by Denver Sallee of Lake County Right to Life.

“This decision that completely ignores the dangerous elevator situation is unacceptable, and continues to place women’s lives at risk. We are joining with pro-life groups in Ohio to call for the immediate closure of Preterm,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman.

The Fire Marshall’s report stated, “Preterm is currently in the process of obtaining permits through the City of Cleveland to begin extensive repairs to its elevator.”

But that’s not good enough for Newman, who points out that a Schindler elevator repair truck is frequently seen at Preterm, yet the elevator malfunctions have not been resolved.

A formal letter demanding the closure has been sent via e-mail to Jennifer Smith in the State Fire Marshall’s office along with documentation to support the closure. Those signing the letter were:

Denver Sallee, Lake County Right to Life
Cheryl Sullenger, Operation Rescue
Pastor Ernie Sanders, Geauga County Right to Life
Molly Smith, Cleveland Right to Life
Denise Leopold, Right to Life of Northeast Ohio
WRWL Radio Ministries
HELP Pro-Life Apostolate

[Read the Letter]

All five of Preterm’s abortion procedure rooms are located on the third floor. Paramedics depend on the elevator to move patients from the third floor to ambulances on the street below. Stair wells in the building are inadequate to ensure that patients can be accessed and transported quickly when minutes can mean the difference between life and death.

Attached to the letter seeking Preterm’s closure was a recording of a 911 call placed on March 31, 2012. That recording indicated that a 300-pound woman was hemorrhaging after a second-trimester abortion.

The Preterm abortion worker who placed the call told the dispatcher that the “elevator is down,” and that “They may need an extra person…to move her” due to her weight. On a video taken by a pro-life activist from the scene, an EMS worker is seen fetching a stretcher from the ambulance and used that instead of a gurney to carry the woman down two flights of stairs to the awaiting ambulance.

Also included with the letter was the complete, unredacted EMS report detailing how on March 21, 2014, an abortion patient, Lakisha Wilson, suffered respiratory and cardiac arrest. The report states that Preterm’s malfunctioning elevator delayed the first responders from reaching Wilson, who was “not breathing at all” according to the 911 call that was placed seeking emergency help for the 22-year old woman.

The report narrative further states that EMS workers were unable to intubate Wilson or reinsert her IV while in the third floor procedure room due to the fact that the elevator did not accommodate a gurney in a fully reclined position that was required before intubation could take place.

Instead, Wilson was placed in a seated position so the gurney could fit in the elevator and was only intubated once she was loaded into the ambulance. It is believed that this delay in establishing an airway contributed to anoxic brain damage that caused her death.

“If these well-documented incidents do not convince the Fire Marshall that Preterm’s malfunctioning and inadequate elevator poses a ‘serious life safety violation,’ then nothing will,” said Newman.

Operation Rescue has joined with state and national pro-life groups in filing numerous complaints with the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio Medical Board, and the Ohio Attorney General’s office and more. In each case, Ohio authorities have chosen to ignore the evidence of unsafe conditions at Preterm even though they have contributed to the death of at least one patient.

“It is almost as if inspectors went into Preterm with their eyes covered, their ears plugged, and their mouths gagged. A woman has died. One patient after another has been injured. You would think that would mean something to these people, but so far it has not,” said Newman. “We cannot in good conscience stop demanding the closure of this dangerous abortion mill until it is shut down permanently!”

Take Action!

Please contact Jennifer Smith with the State Fire Marshall’s office at jennifer.smith2@com.state.oh.us and voice support for the demand to shut down Preterm in the face of documented emergency care delays caused by its broken elevator.
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[Image: Skullspiration.com]

  • Dominic Huber

    I still hold a huge grudge against that clinic because it was Lakisha Wilson’s death that prompted me to began working as a pro-life activist.

  • John Q

    Too bad she wasn’t in a medical facility where they could have intubated her and kept her alive. But wait, I thought abortion clinics were medical facilities. Shouldn’t someone there have known how to perform CPR and known how to intubate a patient? Especially since they do invasive procedures that might have less than optimal results sometimes. I know, they do have less than optimal results for the children, but sometimes even the mother of the dead child has complications.

  • Vivavox

    The Fire Marshall, Medical Board, or Health Dept could at least say Preterm must suspend performing surgical abortions until the extensive repairs to the elevator is complete.

    Additional letters from EMTs, fire fighters, and other first responders might be more persuasive. Of course, we pro-lifers want to shut down Preterm’s operation. It is the people who have to actually go in and transport a patient down three flights of stairs that have a vested interest in an operable elevator. What if they get on the elevator with a critical patient and it stops functioning mid-descent?

  • scrdhrt2@cox.net

    Fred Sokol, Rocky River, Ohio

    AS A NON ATTORNEY: I FEEL PRETERM’S “ELEVATOR AND SHAFT” SHOULD BE REPLACED WITH A NEW ELEVATOR AND SHAFT TO ACCOMODATE A PATIENT ON A GURNEY IN A FULLY RECLINED POSITION. AND IN MY OPINION REPAIRS TO THE ELEVATOR AT PRETERM ALONE, IS NOT ENOUGH.

    SEE THIS AND OTHER SUGGESTIONS I GIVE ON WHAT SHOULD BE DONE REGARDING PRETERM’S ELEVATOR BELOW.

    FIRST: As reported by Operation Rescue, by Cheryl Sullenger “Fire Marshall Ignores Danger of Broken Elevator at Abortion Clinic Where Patient Died” June 23, 2015. http://www.operationrescue.org/archives/fire-marshall-ignores-danger-of-broken-elevator-at-abortion-clinic-where-patient-died/

    What is troubling to me about preterm’s elevator is that it appears too small to accommodate a patient on a gurney in a fully reclined position.

    Though the building that preterm abortion mill is now in at 12000 Shaker Boulevard, Cleveland, Ohio was originally opened 54 years ago as a 25,000 square foot office building in 1961. And though “Its exterior was restored and the interior thoroughly modernized to accommodate a medical clinic.” as per (Flagship Carnegie Corp.website]
    http://flagprop.com/completed_projects.shtml

    Yet it was recently reported that preterm’s “… elevator did not accommodate a gurney in a fully reclined position that was required before intubation could take place.
    Instead, Wilson was placed in a seated position so the gurney could fit in the elevator and was only intubated once she was loaded into the ambulance. It is believed that this delay in establishing an airway contributed to anoxic brain damage that caused her death.” http://www.operationrescue.org/archives/fire-marshall-ignores-danger-of-broken-elevator-at-abortion-clinic-where-patient-died/

    SECONDLY, THAT SAID, MY SUGGESTION FOR PRETERM AS PER THE INFORMATION IN QUOTATIONS GIVEN ABOVE THAT ARE ALL PUBLIC RECORD:

    RIP THE ELEVATOR AND SHAFT OUT FROM THE PRETERM BUILDING AND REPLACE IT WITH A NEW ELEVATOR AND SHAFT AT PRETERM THAT ACCOMODATES A PATIENT AND A GURNEY IN A RECLINED POSITION.

    Instead of just fixing the elevator at preterm. Just replace the entire elevator and shaft structure at preterm. Then establish an entirely new elevator and shaft structure at preterm to accommodate a patient on a gurney in a fully reclined position being transported anywhere on said preterm elevator. [SOMETIMES I REPEAT MYSELF TO GET MY POINT ACROSS].

    ALSO, CORRECT ME IF I AM WRONG.

    Are Cleveland area Hospitals required to have elevators that accommodate a patient on a gurney in a fully reclined position in their buildings?

    If so, do you not think that is required not only by Local and State law but also required by Federal Law?

    If that is the case, why not preterm abortion mill be required by Local, State and Federal law to have an elevator that accommodates a patient on a gurney in a fully reclined position as well?

    I know you and I are required by state of Ohio law to have a driver’s license in order to drive which we do.

    Yet, why not preterm abortion mill be required by either Local, State or Federal law to have an elevator that accommodates a patient on a gurney in a fully reclined position as well?

    Has anyone checked this possiblity out? Thank You.

    God Bless You, and Your Family
    Your Friend, Fred Sokol, Rocky River, Ohio