Court Quashes Subpoenas Seeking Abortion Records

Jeff Gorman reports:

Kansas health employees are not required to hand over abortion records to former state Attorney General Phill Kline or testify about the contents of those reports, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled.

In 2004, Kline subpoenaed Shawnee County District Judge Richard D. Anderson, attorney Stephen W. Cavanaugh, and employees of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment for records on abortions performed in the state the previous year.

The state agency disclosed its 2003 abortion records, some of which had been submitted to the Department of Health and Environment by the Comprehensive Health of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri.


“Reports submitted by an abortion clinic to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment cannot be released to a district attorney,” Beier wrote. “The reports thus qualify as ‘other protected matter’ … and any subpoena from a district attorney, insofar as it seeks production of the reports themselves or testimony revealing their contents must be quashed.”

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