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article imagePlanned Parenthood defends itself against video that twists facts

By Megan Hamilton     Jul 15, 2015 in Politics
A controversy is brewing over a recently released video that shows a Planned Parenthood executive appearing to discuss the sale of body parts harvested from aborted fetuses with people whom she believes are buyers from a medical company.
The hidden-camera video shows Dr. Deborah Nucatola, the Senior Director of Medical Services at Planned Parenthood, appearing to discuss selling hearts, lungs, livers, and the muscles of aborted fetuses, MailOnline reports. She also discusses "partial-birth abortion" techniques so that the organs can be delivered intact.
In the video Nucatola is seen munching a salad and having a glass of wine as she talks to the buyers--who are actually actors posing as part of an undercover investigation of Planned Parenthood conducted by The Center for
As she talks, she lists the organs that sell the best and says that many buyers are looking to purchase livers, MailOnline reports.
"I would say it's probably around $30 to $100, depending on the facility and what's involved," she says, regarding the prices for each organ.
The actors had said they were from a human biologics company.
Certainly some of what Nucatola talks about in the video is graphic, touching on some seemingly disturbing points about tissue donation, Gawker reports.
"A lot of people want intact hearts these days, because they're looking for specific nodes...Some people want lower extremities too, which, that's simple. I mean, that's easy."
Then it sounds like she's talking about Planned Parenthood's monetary rewards.
"Every provider has had patients who want to donate their tissue, and they absolutely want to accommodate them. They just want to do it in a way that is not perceived as, 'This clinic is selling tissue, this clinic is making money off of this.'"
Even the title of the video sounds alarmist:
"Planned Parenthood Uses Partial-Birth Abortions to Sell Baby Parts." Aaaaaahhhhh!!!!!!
But here's the kicker, as reported by The Hill:
"Deborah Nucatola was speculating on the range of reimbursement that patients can receive after stating they wish to donate any tissue after a procedure," according to a report prepared by the organization's PR firm.
In other words, she wasn't looking to score the big bucks for Planned Parenthood.
"The promotional video mischaracterizing Planned Parenthood's mission and services is made by a long time anti-abortion activist that has used deceptive and unethical video editing, and that has created a fake medical website as well as a fake human tissue website that purports to provide services to stem cell researchers," Planned Parenthood wrote in another statement, The Hill reports.
Also provided were several pages detailing background research about the organization's use of donated fetal tissue, which it describes as "humanitarian undertaking that hold the potential to cure disease, save lives, and ameliorate suffering."
Further, the statement added that the organization's affiliates can be legally reimbursed when a tissue donation procedure is performed, for the "additional expenses related tissue donation, which can vary based on individual circumstance," but it doesn't go to staff members or providers, The Hill reports.
Gawker writes that the "additional expenses" may be the $10-$30 it costs for transporting the tissue that's being donated, and Planned Parenthood notes this is "standard across the medical field." It should also be noted that the patient donating the tissue isn't reimbursed either."
But Planned Parenthood is constantly under fire from a seemingly endless stream of conservatives, so the organization is fighting back by releasing 11 pages of attack points against the Center for Medical Progress.
Whomever made this video has twisted the words around and taken it grossly out of context, Gawker notes.
"Planned Parenthood is doing nothing even remotely shady here, nor are they doing something they haven't publicly discussed before on multiple occasions."
The real question now, though, is who's behind this whole campaign in the first place?
Also taken out of context, right in the very beginning of the video is the short clip of Gloria Feldt, president of Planned Parenthood, Gawker reports. The way the clip is edited, it looks as if Feldt is criticizing the recorded conversation that is soon to follow. However, the 20/20 section in which she appears is actually about an investigation into abuses made by private sector "tissue and organ procurement companies."
Not only that, but Feldt even went on to affirm that "Planned Parenthood supports research using fetal tissue in accordance with legal and ethical guidelines and are deeply concerned about the attempt by some to profit from the humanitarian contributions of courageous women."
The nine-minute video, with over 91,000 views on YouTube, has prompted ire from several prominent Republicans, including Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz), and they have criticized the organization's practices.
If you're curious about what services Planned Parenthood provides, especially for poor women, this chart provided by should be illuminating.
The video below is the full-length video.
More about Planned parenthood, partialterm abortion, Body parts
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