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Government/Politics

Planned Parenthood Counters Video, Says It Does Not Collect Fetal Tissue In Texas

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Planned Parenthood
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The group is under fire for a hidden video conversation between Planned Parenthood’s national director of medical research Deborah Nucatula and two members of the antiabortion group Center for Medical Progress.  The abortion opponents were posing as representatives from a medical research company and secretly taped the meeting.

In the video Nucatula describes in graphic detail what she calls harvesting fetal organs and tissue samples for research:

“A lot of people want liver, and for that reason most providers will do this case under ultrasound guidance so they know where they are putting their liver, then a rate-limiting step the head is the biggest part most of the other stuff can come out intact.”

Sarah Wheat is with Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas and says the organization doesn’t provide fetal tissue for research here.

“Our service centers and ambulatory surgical centers do not participate in any tissue donation programs but it is standard practice in the medical community, but because we don’t participate in these programs I’m not as familiar with them,” Wheat said.

The video has again made Planned Parenthood a target for state and congressional leaders who oppose abortion. The organization’s National Director and native-Texan Cecile Richards released this pre-recorded video response.

“I want to be really clear, the allegation that Planned Parenthood profits in any way from tissue donation is not true,” Richards stated.

In that same message Richards says Nucatula lacks a sense of compassion when discussing the procedure.

“This is unacceptable and I personally apologize for the staff member’s tone and statements. As always if there is any aspect of work, we want to know about it and we take swift action to address it,” said Richards.

This week, not long after the video surfaced online, Republicans at the State Capitol began calling for a multitude of investigations.   Gov. Greg Abbott has ordered Attorney General Ken Paxton to look into whether Planned Parenthood’s business practices violate state laws.  He has order the State’s Health and Human Services Department to search for any potential violations.  

Something Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas’ Sarah Wheat says she isn’t afraid to face.

“We do feel confident in the healthcare that we provide and we’re confident that any investigation will prove that to be true,” Wheat reaffirmed.

Early next month, members of the Senate’s Health and Human Services committee will also begin examining Planned Parenthood’s business practices and make recommendations on whether additional legislation is necessary.