Virginia Health Board Approves Restrictive Abortion Clinic Regulations

The Virginia Board of Health “has voted 12-1 to adopt regulations that will impose new restrictions on the construction and operation of Virginia’s 21 clinics.” The guidelines — the result of legislation Gov. Bob McDonnell (R-VA) signed earlier this year — were formulated through an “emergency” process that bypassed the normal public notice procedures and require existing abortion clinics to meet the structural standards of brand new surgery centers. “The next step is executive branch review, which would pass through the offices of the state attorney general, the Department of Planning and Budget, Health and Human Services, and the governor’s office….Temporary regulations would be in place for 12 months while permanent rules are drafted, though Mr. McDonnell has the authority to extend them up to an additional six months.”