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      Abortion opponents seek tighter rules on doctors

      Abortion opponents are asking the state to impose tighter restrictions on doctors performing the medical procedure in Alabama. The state health agency held a public hearing on a proposed rule that would drastically reduce the number of abortions a physician's office can perform without being considered an abortion clinic. It would mean an increase state oversight.

      Activists told a hearing officer they want even tighter regulations, with doctor's offices unable to perform any abortions without being considered a clinic. They say that would help protect women. Current rules define an abortion clinic as any facility that performs 30 or more abortions during any two months in a year. The new rule would drop that to 10 monthly. A state health committee will decide later on the final rule.

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