Planned Parenthood Backs Down From Expanding Telemed Abortion Process

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jan 1, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Planned Parenthood Backs Down From Expanding Telemed Abortion Process

by Steven Ertelt Editor
June 8
, 2010

Des Moines, IA ( — A local Planned Parenthood affiliate in Iowa has backed down from comments saying it would expand the controversial telemed abortion process throughout Iowa. The process has women getting the dangerous abortion drug without an in-person examination by a physician.

The process is concerning pro-life advocates because national Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards recently visited Iowa.

There, she confirmed the abortion business has plans to put women at risk nationwide by denying them a doctor visit before getting the drug that has killed at least 13 women — and perhaps as many as 40 — and injured at least 1,100 more according to 2006 FDA figures.

At the time, Planned Parenthood of East Central Iowa Director of Patient Services Barbara Chadwick told Iowa Public Radio there were plans to expand the telemed abortion process nationwide.

Now, PPECI is backing down, telling the local Dubuque newspaper it has not authorized such abortions there or in Cedar Rapids.

Meanwhile, a weekend press release from the abortion business indicates there has been no Board approval for the expansion of abortion into its clinics and denies that there is a blueprint in place for such an expansion.

Steven Brody, the director of Dubuque County Right to Life, told today, "Planned Parenthood is performing the old telemed two-step in order to try to have it both ways."

He points out how PPECI Director of Communications and Development Jenifer Vick told the Dubuque Telegraph Herald on May 28, “PPECI has never been abortion providers in our 30-year history and PPECI has no plans at this time to provide abortion services.”

Then Vick is quoted in the June 6th Telegraph Herald saying, “It’s not that Planned Parenthood of East Central Iowa wouldn’t like to have specific plans to provide abortion care to women in need – it’s just that there is not currently a blueprint developed as to how exactly that could take place."

Vick eventually admits, “I thought it was inappropriate to have any discussion with media regarding any future possibilities of offering the provision of abortion services unless plans were in place.”

Brody says "Planned Parenthood can’t handle the truth, and their 95-year history of lies, deceit, and manipulation proves it."

"Even when one of their employees (Barbara Chadwick) speaks the truth, and announces that telemed abortions are coming to Cedar Rapids and Dubuque, PPECI has to cover its tracks by saying that she misspoke," Brody said. "Now that Ms. Chadwick sees what happens when a PP employee speaks the truth, perhaps she should join the growing list of ex-PP employees and find another job."

Operation Rescue president Troy Newman also weighed in on the telemed abortion controversy.

"Planned Parenthood is in a tailspin over this telemed abortion scandal," he said. "The dangers and possible illegalities of telemed abortions were made public before Planned Parenthood was ready, so now they are forced to backtrack."

"PPECI wants the telemed abortions, but is backing off now that the truth is out that these remote controlled abortions constitute an abuse of telemedicine and the doctor/patient relationship. It is very likely that we have delayed or even scuttled the planned implementation of dangerous telemed abortions in East Central Iowa," said Newman.

Telemed abortions are remote controlled push button abortions using pills containing the dangerous drug RU 486, also known as Mifepistrone.

An abortion practitioner briefly visits with a patient via a teleconferencing hook-up then pushes a button to release a drawer at the outlying clinic that contains the abortion drugs. The patient takes one set of pills and is sent home with instructions for taking the rest of the medication on her own.

The woman never has direct personal access to a licensed physician at any time during the abortion process, even though that is part of the suggested protocols from the FDA.

Planned Parenthood of the Heartland, (PPH), a separate and larger Planned Parenthood affiliate, has been experimenting in the use of what is known as the "telemed" abortion since July, 2008. So far, the risky process has not expanded beyond the PPH organization, Newman indicates.


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