FREDERICTON – The former Morgentaler Clinic in Fredericton will reopen as a general health centre.
Reproductive Justice, a reproductive issues advocacy group, raised over $125,000 last year and has used it to purchase and reopen the clinic, which has been renamed Clinic 554, under the direction of Dr. Adrian Eoin Edgar.
Edgar will offer general health services, with a concentration in sexual health care including abortions, and those who do not have a family doctor.
Premier Brian Gallant said in November he would scrap a contentious regulation that restricts access to abortion in the province.
Gallant said not only will the procedure no longer require two physicians, it will also no longer have to be done by a specialist.
This was after the Morgentaler Clinic closed last summer because there wasn’t enough money for it to stay open.
Reproductive Justive spokesperson, Jesse Taylor, said there are still limitations. The government has only decided to allow abortions in hospitals, not clinics.
“Luck and privilege is not the same as access,” she said.
“They’re shooting themselves in the foot. Abortions are far less expensive to government in a clinic setting than in a hospital.”
Provincial health minister Victor Boudreau said Thursday the province is remaining firm on only offering abortions in hospitals for now.
“We want to give the RHA’s time to roll out their plan,” he said. “We’ll gauge along the way. Like any government decision or program, at one point you have to evaluate and reassess and at that time maybe it’s something we’ll look at.”
Vitalite Health Network has said they’ll continue offering abortions in Bathurst and Moncton. Horizon Health said they’ll begin to offer them in April, in specific hospitals.
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