lawsuit has been filed against a
abortion clinic by a woman who contends the doctor she OK'd to
perform her abortion was switched out just before the procedure.
Brandy Hildreth, 26, of Granite City, had
consented in writing to receive an abortion from a "Dr.
Palmer" at the Hope Clinic for Women, 1602 21st St. in
Granite City, on Feb. 8, according to a four-page complaint filed
in Third District Circuit Court April 23.
After the procedure, Hildreth found out
that Dr. Lisa M. Memmel, a second-year fellow at the clinic, had
performed the abortion, the filing shows.Hildreth "was
unaware of the specific identity" of who was performing the
abortion during the procedure, the documents said.
She is suing Hope Clinic and Memmel for
medical battery and seeks $50,000 for injuries, emotional harm and
Rhonda D. Fiss, a
lawyer who filed the case for Hildreth, did not return calls
Wednesday and Thursday.
The lawsuit does not give the first name
of "Dr. Palmer," but various reports have said Dr. Allen
S. Palmer, who state records show is affiliated with
, works at the clinic.
Clinic Executive Director Sally Burgess
referred questions to the facility's lawyer, Mark Levy, who would
also not confirm the identity of Palmer.
He also denied that the clinic violated
its agreement and said the form that Hildreth signed before the
abortion indicated only who would be supervising the procedure,
not performing it.
"You have a doctor that's going to
be a supervisor," he said Wednesday. "It's doesn't say
he's going to perform the surgery."
The form does not say that Memmel would
be conducting the abortion, he said.
Levy said it's common for various doctors
and staff to be involved in the procedure.
"There may be two to three doctors
in any kind of surgery," he said. "It would be heck of
thing for every hospital to have to have every person in operating
room be on a consent form."
Levy said Memmel was at the clinic
through a program with the University of Chicago Medical Center,
where she is a fellow. Court documents also list Memmel as a
obstetrics-gynecology hospitalist at Little Company of
Memmel has had no legal or disciplinary
actions filed against her since she received certification two
years ago, state records show.
The case is the latest in a series of
legal actions filed in recent years against the privately owned
clinic, which opened in 1974.
The facility in June agreed to settle a
lawsuit filed by anti-abortion protestors who said workers
assaulted them outside the
building in 2000.
The clinic has also sparked several
lawsuits about limits on placards displayed around the facility
and at community events.