Discipline sought for doctor who gave abortion to Ohio girl, 10
INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana’s Republican attorney general on Wednesday asked the state medical licensing board to discipline an Indianapolis doctor who has spoken publicly about providing an abortion to a 10-year-old rape victim who traveled from Ohio after its more-restrictive abortion law took effect.
The complaint alleges Dr. Caitlin Bernard violated state law by not reporting the girl’s child abuse to Indiana authorities and violated patient privacy laws by telling a newspaper reporter about the girl’s treatment.
That account sparked a national political uproar in the weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, with some news outlets and Republican politicians falsely suggesting Bernard fabricated the story and President Joe Biden nearly shouting his outrage over the case during a White House event.
Bernard and her lawyers maintain the girl’s abuse had already been reported to Ohio police and child protective services officials before the doctor ever saw the child. A 27-year-old man has been charged in Columbus with raping the girl.
Bernard’s lawyers argue Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita, who is stridently anti-abortion, has been spreading false or misleading information about the doctor with his investigation allegations.
The attorney general’s complaint asked the licensing board to impose “appropriate disciplinary action” but doesn’t specify a requested penalty. State licensing boards ensure physicians have the appropriate training and education to practice in the state and can suspend, revoke or place on probation a doctor’s license.
“Dr. Bernard violated the law, her patient’s trust, and standards for the medical profession when she disclosed her patient’s abuse, medical issues, and medical treatment to a reporter,” he said.