Google recently listed Hillcrest as “Permanently Closed.”
My friend showed me the listing on Wednesday morning. No one had shown up to open the abortion facility, so we were getting more an more excited that Google was right. I was hoping that no one ever would show up, but they did. Google was wrong. Hillcrest is still open. They will be doing abortions there again tomorrow.
Why did Google change the status of Hillcrest to “Permanently Closed?” My understanding is that the business owner can direct Google to make any changes to hours and closures on Google results. Hillcrest used to be affiliated with the Potomac Family Planning Center, but that relationship quietly ended at the beginning of this year. Did the Potomac Family Planning Center direct Google to list it as closed?
Now Google has removed the "Permanently Closed" label, but doesn't list any business hours.
What is happening with the Hillcrest Women’s Medical Center?
Last month the Department of Health published their inspection report. Hillcrest failed. They were not in compliance with a number of state laws and common sense practices. Hillcrest had outdated medicines and equipment on their shelves, which were accessible to anyone going inside. They never performed background checks on their employees. Their abortion doctor is not board certified as an OB/GYN. They had no Registered Nurse on staff. Etc. etc. Read a local news article and view the TV news report here.
Instead of shutting Hillcrest down when these violations were discovered, the Department of Health has given them until August 31 to correct the violations. This allows them to continue performing abortions in the same conditions as before.
Will Hillcrest correct all of these problems by August 31?
Judging from the state of their grass, it’s not likely. This place can’t even afford to hire someone to come and mow their front lawn, why do we expect that they will start operating according to state code?
Here are some of the things that they have to do to get up to code, and the observations I've made so far.
Staff. Hillcrest claimed to have “hired and RN who is start [sic] 4/26/2017.”
No new staff came from April 26 until May 19. In fact, they had one fewer staff person present during part of that time. So there was definitely still no RN present before, during, and after the abortions that happened at Hillcrest even though they claimed to have hired an RN. On May 19 there was a new woman present who may be on staff, but she left before most of the patients. She didn't come back the following week as more abortions were happening.
This week they had two new people show up who were driving cars with D.C. license plates. Are these new staff members? Is one an RN? Are they abortion business consultants? I will keep updating you as I learn more.
Medicine and Equipment.
The outdated medicines and equipment could easily have been discarded, and hopefully has been discarded properly. (Hillcrest claims that they have done so.)
The other problem with the medicine is that several kinds of medicines are “stored on an open unlocked shelf in the recovery area.” Hillcrest must properly lock down their medications. Have they done this? Will they?
Dr. Thweat has been operating as an abortionist in Pennsylvania for nearly 40 years without ever getting his board certifications. My friends told me that he took his boards several times, but has always failed.
It seems unlikely that Dr. Thweat will be able to accomplish this board certification process in three months where he has been unable to do so for 40 years.
Hillcrest has some significant hurdles to clear before they are following Pennsylvania state law. It’s unfortunate that they are being allowed to continue performing abortions while they correct their violations. Shouldn’t a health facility be closed until they are in compliance?
Why does Hillcrest have any clients? How does anyone hear about this filthy place?
On Wednesday I was able to talk to a man who was there with his wife for an abortion. He talked with me and the other sidewalk advocates about his situation. His wife is on heavy medication, and the doctors told them that their nine-week old child will have serious health issues because of that. Tyler* and Heather* decided that abortion was their best option, and came to Hillcrest to have it done.
Did their doctor refer them here? Tyler said that no one recommended Hillcrest, but somehow he learned about this place and scheduled Heather’s abortion.
It’s likely that one way people learn about Hillcrest is through doctor referrals.
Another way that people might learn about Hillcrest is through government resource websites. Many municipalities list health facilities in their area. Lebanon County has a website like this, and lists Hillcrest under their “Mental Health / Intellectual Disabilities / Early Intervention” resources. (An odd placement, for sure.)
The fact that Lebanon County has listed Hillcrest as a resource is disgusting. It is the only “Women’s Health Center” listed on this part of the website.
So the only resource that Lebanon County is referring women to is one in a neighboring county, with an unmown lawn, with no RN, whose abortionist is not board certified, and which failed the health inspection in many more ways. Is this the only place that Lebanon has to direct women to?
Surely we can do better. Women do not need to be referred to abortions. Instead, we should refer them to local pregnancy resource centers that actually help. The Susquehanna Valley Pregnancy Services location is only two blocks from the County Municipal building in Lebanon. The Lebanon County website should stop referring women to Hillcrest, and should start referring them to SVPS instead.
I’ve contacted the Administrator of the Lebanon County Mental Health/Intellectual Disability/Early Intervention Program and asked him to remove the Hillcrest listing. Mr. Kevin J. Schrum has not yet responded. I'll continue to contact them each week until they remove Hillcrest from their resource listing. I will not give up on ending the association between Lebanon County and Hillcrest.
*Not their real names.