A plan to perform second trimester abortions at the Madison Surgery Center has received final approval from the facility's board.
In a unanimous 6-0 vote Friday, the board approved a plan that will offer abortions to women who are up to 22 weeks pregnant. Peggy Hamill of Pro-Life Wisconsin calls the decision "appalling" and says it's a failure of the health care system.
The clinic is a joint venture between UW Hospital and Clinics, the UW Medical Foundation, and Meriter Hospital. Several other boards tied to the clinic had already approved the abortion plan in the weeks leading up to today's vote. A public hearing on the proposal earlier this week drew a wide range of testimony against and in support of the plan.
Supporters of the proposal argue the option of second trimester abortions is needed in the Madison area, following the retiring of the only doctor who would perform them last December. Several groups have argued the abortions are legal and not offering them at the clinic will force women to travel long distances for a procedure that is sometimes medically necessary.
Still, Hamill says killing babies should not be an option and several groups will continue efforts to end the abortions. Those include demonstrations outside of the clinic and showing support for staff who opt out of helping with the procedures.