On July 30, 2015 through today, the Center for Medical Progress released 11 undercover investigation videos much like the style used by 60 Minutes. The investigative journalists posed as a biotech start-up company that was interested in partnering with Planned Parenthood to collect fetal baby parts following an abortion. The footage captured revealed Planned Parenthood senior executives making extremely troubling and morally offensive statements that Planned Parenthood may be selling aborted fetal body parts including lungs, hearts, livers, extremities, and heads. As noted below, Illinois was specifically discussed in the first video as a “fabulous” place to obtain harvested fetal body parts. These nine videos uncovered morally repulsive and potentially illegal behavior by Planned Parenthood executives including:
- Planned Parenthood was caught profiting off of harvesting fetal body parts of aborted children including: lungs, liver, head, heart, and extremities.
- Planned Parenthood admitted in a letter to Congress that they are paid approximately $60 per fetal body part harvested.
- Planned Parenthood admitted that they have changed the patient’s approved abortion procedure to one that would ensure fetal body parts are not damaged.
- Unsanitary clinic conditions inside Planned Parenthood leave fetal remains infected with diseases.
- An admission that intact babies are given to researchers (and potentially born alive before being killed).
- Forcing women to allow their aborted child’s body to be harvested and sold.
In video 14, new footage of Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast CEO and President, as well as newly released documents from a Texas Public information Act, show Planned Parenthood covered up the sale of fetal tissue through misleading wording and accounting tricks. The video also highlights footage from a previous video in which Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast Director of Research, Melissa Farrell, says, “We had two levels of invoicing for them. We had it worded as ‘per consent.’”
In video 13, representatives from the National Abortion Federation, Planned Parenthood’s allied group, are seen suggesting a “group purchasing program” through which to harvest and supply baby-parts to companies. They also tell the investigators, “We have an exhibit hall and then we also have the general conference. But I mean, this is a very great way to talk to our members. We have a group purchasing program through our membership, so it seems like this would be a really great option to be able to offer our members as well.”
In video 12, it is revealed that Planned Parenthood’s late-term abortion clinic in Orange County, California, has a business relationship with the biotech company, Da Vinci Biosciences, to harvest and sell the organs of aborted fetuses. Dr. Jennefer Russo, Medical Director at Planned Parenthood of Orange & San Bernardino Counties, explains that “They [Da Vinci] take the whole specimen.” When talking about producing intact fetuses for organ harvesting, she also says, “It happens sometimes, but it’s pretty rare. But, we try.”
What’s further shocking is that Dr. Russo admits that her affiliate is not using digoxin, the chemical used to kill the baby during an abortion and prevent live birth. Without this, CMP remarks that during an abortion it is possible for intact babies to be born alive.
In video 11, Dr. Amna Dermish, a 2nd trimester abortionist at Planned Parenthood in Austin, TX, describes using a horrific abortion technique that is identical to illegal partial-birth abortion procedures, in order to obtain intact babies up to 22 weeks old.She says, “My aim is usually to get the specimens out pretty intact,” and she admits that she uses ultrasound guidance to convert the babies to “breech.”
When asked about harvesting fetal brain, she says, “I haven’t been able to do that yet. This will give me something to strive for.”
In video 10, Planned Parenthood states that baby parts sales are a “valid exchange” and some clinics make a “fair amount of income” by harvesting fresh baby parts.They fearfully claim that it would be a “huge PR issue” if word of this publicly surfaced.
Furthermore, Planned Parenthood says it is “intentional” and “by choice” that they have no set policy or guidelines on procurement. A Planned Parenthood Administrator remarks “We can’t consent to be bullied by ridiculous laws”…. “A company…that wants to give our organization money for the tissue, I think that’s a valid exchange. And that’s okay.”
Video 9 shows Planned Parenthood Medical Director acknowledging that the organization has had a long-term relationship with the baby-part harvesting company, Advanced Bioscience Resources (ABR).
An ABR Procurement Manager is then taped saying they have had cases in which the baby was intact and “just fell out.” She is looking for “smooth livers” and the organs in these babies are fully intact, in contrast to other cases where they are “ripped-up.” She continues, ” Now they’re trying to make abortion illegal, and that’s… where we get our tissue.”
Stem Express CEO confirms she pays Planned Parenthood, but also reveals that some staff at the clinics have been on the payroll with ABR. ABR has paid advisors on the boards for these clinics.
Video 8 features StemExpress CEO, Cate Dyer, talking about the company’s work with abortion clinics and how they have frequently dealt with “intact cases.” She states, “We’ve done a lot.” She mentions “It’s volume for us.” Later she clearly states, “Planned Parenthood has volume…because they’re a volume institution.” The blunt and rather morbid tone of the discussion that follows is striking.
In the second half of the video, Ms. Dyer makes disturbing comments about the conditions of the clinics saying, “I’ve seen really rampant, rampant problems with bacteria in certain clinics. Some where you’re kind of like in question of really… should they really… you know…”
Video 7 is absolutely horrific. An ex StemExpress staffer who worked in a Planned Parenthood confirms “I’m sitting here and I’m looking at this fetus, and its heart is beating.” Advanced Bioscience Resources staffer also tell a story about a baby “just falling out” – being born alive. And Holly – the employee who use to work for Stem Express but is now blowing the whistle on them – tells the most heart wrenching story about a baby boy she had to harvest the brain from.
Video 6 features ex StemExpress employee Holly O’Donnell on what is was like working inside a Planned Parenthood. Holly states: 1. Women’s babies were harvested without their consent 2. Women were pressured into donating 3. The Planned Parenthood doctors she worked with lack compassion and are grisly and cold. 4. Women were coerced into having abortions.
Video 5 shows Planned Parenthood executives in Texas stating they can alter the abortion process to obtain in-tact fetuses and then it would just be a matter of line-itemizing specimens. The executive also calls it “diversification of revenue streams.”
Video 4 shows a Planned Parenthood VP stating fetuses may be born intact and agrees to be paid specifically for each specimen.
Video 3 is of a whistleblower who use to work for Stem Express harvesting fetal body parts. She states, Planned Parenthood profits off of the sale of fetal body parts.
Video 2 is of a meeting with Dr. Mary Gatter, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s Medical Director’s Council and medical director for Planed Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley:
Video 1 is of a meeting with Dr. Deborah Nucatola, senior medical services director for Planned Parenthood Federation of America:
A Stem Express brochure used to advertise contracts with Planned Parenthood clinics to harvest fetal body parts states four times that working with Stem Express is “financially profitable” for the clinic. Planned Parenthood endorses this brochure.
The Center for Medical Progress released a brochure from Stem Express, a biotech corporation that contracts with Planned Parenthood affiliates to harvest aborted fetal body parts. On this advertisement is an endorsement from Dr. Dorothy Fergerson, of Planned Parenthood Mar Monte. Four times in this four-page brochure, Stem Express states it: “fiscally rewards clinics” is “contributing to the fiscal growth of your clinic,” is “financially profitable,” and is “providing a financial benefit to clinics.” The brochure can be viewed here.
According to the Illinois Comptroller’s Office, Planned Parenthood received $42 million in taxpayer money from the state of Illinois between 2011 and 2015. Illinois received the following amounts from Illinois taxpayers:
2015 – $7,926,550.41 2014 – $7,707,281.96 2013 – $7,921,314.62
2012 – $8,317,134.25 2011 – $10,464,461.03
Source: Illinois Comptroller’s Office
Planned Parenthood currently receives $1.4 million in federal taxpayer money per day.
Dr. Deborah Nucatola told fetal organ buyers that Chicago was a “fabulous” place to obtain fetal body parts: “There [Chicago] you have probably the best opportunity outside of UCSF to get those larger cases. But Cook County is fabulous, it’s in the center of Chicago, two airports, plenty of opportunities there. …The largest family planning provider in the Mid-West. Cook County hospital, Stroger Hospital.”
NOTE: Illinois Right to Life, via our attorneys at the Thomas More Society, has submitted a Freedom of Information Act Request to Stroger Hospital in Cook County to find out if this publicly funded hospital is donating or selling fetal body parts. Check back for updated information.
The receiving or giving of human organs for profit is a federal felony (42 U.S. Code 274e) and violation of Illinois law (The Anatomical Gift Act 755 ILCS 50/5-50). As the above points show, there is reasonable concern that Planned Parenthood may be operating in gross violation of federal and state law.
Regardless of the law, these videos show extremely troubling and disturbing behavior by Planned Parenthood executives that is morally reprehensible. The body parts of aborted children should not be harvested and sold.
The aborting of unborn fetuses and the selling of their body parts – lungs, livers, extremities, hearts, and heads – is morally reprehensible and does not deserve the hard-earned money of Illinoisans. We call for any taxpayer money set aside for Planned Parenthood to be eliminated.
Major news stories on the Planned Parenthood scandal can be viewed here: Chicago Tribune CBSNews NBC12 Washington Post FoxNews ABC WGN-TV video transcript 5 Download the flier exposing Planned Parenthood here.