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Planned Parenthood abortion clinic here gets new license

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri’s health department issued on Thursday another license to the state’s only abortion clinic after a yearlong legal battle over whether the Planned Parenthood center at 4251 Forest Park Ave. in the Central West End could stay open.

“We are pleased to put the licensure issue to rest after more than a year of being targeted by Missouri’s health department,” Yamelsie Rodríguez, president and CEO of Reproductive Health Services of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region, said in a statement.

The Department of Health and Senior Services declined last year to renew the clinic’s license, which meant the clinic wouldn’t have been allowed to provide abortions.

Planned Parenthood sued. After a yearlong legal battle, the state’s Administrative Hearing Commission ruled in May that the health department was wrong not to renew the clinic’s license.

Rodríguez said the health department had conducted another inspection at the St. Louis clinic before issuing the license.

“That process was prompt, the inspectors were cordial, and we appreciate the department’s work to issue the license,” Rodríguez said.

The health department, which is represented by the state Attorney General’s Office, hasn’t indicated if it will appeal the Administrative Hearing Commission ruling. Monday is the deadline to appeal.

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