Missouri Lawmakers Get University of Missouri to End Contracts With Planned Parenthood

State   Steven Ertelt   Sep 16, 2015   |   5:17PM    Jefferson City, MO

Missouri lawmakers have been successful in getting the University of Missouri to begin to end its 26-year relationship with the Planned Parenthood abortion business, where it taught medical students how to kill babies in abortions.

Senator Kurt Schaefer used his position as the chair of the Appropriations Committee to get the University of Missouri to end their contracts with Planned Parenthood. The move came after state investigators began investigating the tie between the University and the Planned Parenthood abortion business in light of a series of 10 videos exposing how the abortion company sells aborted babies and their body parts.

“Within the past month, university officials cancelled 10 contracts with Planned Parenthood clinics in four states where students would complete clinical hours,” AP reports. “University of Missouri Health System spokeswoman Mary Jenkins told the Columbia Missourian that nursing and medical students were never required to work at a Planned Parenthood clinic, but it was an optional rotation.”

Apparently, the University of Missouri set up the medical student abortion training in response to accreditation requirements, but kept it even after the requirements expired.

The agreement was required to meet requirements from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, which mandated schools to provide training on abortion procedures at a student’s request, University of Missouri Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin said in a letter to Republican state Sen. Kurt Schaefer of Columbia, who’s leading the Senate Interim Committee on the Sanctity of Life.

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The requirements have since changed, and the agreement wasn’t renewed after it expired in 2011, according to Loftin.

The Columbia Missourian has more on the cancelling of the contracts.

Between Aug. 21 and Sept. 3, university officials canceled 10 contracts with Planned Parenthood clinics in five cities in four states where MU students could complete clinical hours.

The 26-year relationship between the university and the health care provider has come under scrutiny since former Senate Leader Tom Dempsey formed the committee in July in response to the release of videos purporting to show Planned Parenthood senior staff selling aborted tissue. Led by state senator and attorney general hopeful Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia, the committee aims to determine how Missouri clinics dispose of aborted tissue, whether any state funds were used to facilitate abortions and whether the health care provider has broken any state laws, according to the Missouri Senate website.

The committee met again Tuesday to get public feedback on its inquiry. All but one of the people who spoke said they were opposed to abortion and many opposed any facilitation of it by MU.

Representatives from the MU School of Medicine signed a letter of understanding with Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri in 2005 that gave obstetrics and gynecology residents the option of learning how to perform surgical and medical abortions. If a resident were interested in learning to perform abortions, he or she was to contact the residency program director who would give the student contact information for the Columbia Planned Parenthood clinic, according to the letter of understanding. Clinic staff provided arrangements for “orientation, observation, training, and supervised provision” of abortion services, according to the letter. The student would then become “a credentialed provider of medical or surgical pregnancy termination services,” according to the letter.

The University has had other ties with Planned Parenthood as well and pro-life advocates tell LifeNews this is but the first step of getting the University of Missouri out of the abortion business.

Still, Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler was happy to see this step taken and told LifeNews:

“I am extremely thankful to see my alma mater, the University of Missouri, sever ties with Planned Parenthood.  There is no reason for a premier academic institution, like MU, to be associated with the nation’s largest provider of abortions.  The University of Missouri’s Medical School and its decision are worthy of emulation, and I hope other universities will follow suit.”

Previously,the Chancellor of the University of Missouri was under fire for providing conflicting testimony regarding the University’s relationship with the Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Columbia.  State legislative committees are examining the manner in which state  health officials issued a license to allow Planned Parenthood to resume their abortion business at the Columbia clinic.

In an appearance before the Senate Sanctity of Human Life Committee last week, Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin denied that the Missouri University Health Care System had granted staff privileges to the doctor performing chemical abortions at the Columbia clinic.  The focus of the controversy is on the hospital affiliation of Dr. Colleen McNicholas, who is also a leading abortionist at the Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in St. Louis.

In testimony before the Senate committee, Chancellor Loftin insisted that Dr. McNicholas had only been granted “refer and follow privileges” at University Hospital.  Lofton insists that these privileges do not allow McNicholas to admit patients, write orders, prescribe treatment, or perform procedures.  “She  cannot do anything in the hospital but come in the door,” Loftin told the committee.

Yet a document obtained by Senator Kurt Schaefer, Chairman of the Senate committee, contradicts Loftin’s statements.  In a letter dated December 16th, 2014, University Hospital Chief of Staff Dr. Bert Bachrach informs Dr. McNicholas that her request for “clinical privileges” has been approved, and congratulates her on her appointment to the hospital’s “organized medical staff.”

The letter provided McNicholas with a copy of medical staff bylaws, hospital manuals and policies, and access to the hospital’s electronic medical records system.  Dr. McNicholas was provided with an official University  Hospital ID badge, guaranteeing her access to restricted areas.  In separate correspondence, Dr. McNicholas was advised that her medical privileges at the hospital were unrestricted in emergency situations.

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