Whistleblowers of corporate and government abuses have become commonplace in today’s society, with some receiving a lot of backslapping praise for cluing the public in on secrets of others, so it does not surprise that someone would seek to enlighten the public about the shady practice discussed in a recently-released video targeting a Planned Parenthood executive. In the video, the abortion provider executive discusses her willingness to entertain keeping some women in the dark about the exact abortion procedure they might undergo when they come to the clinic. What may be surprising, however, is how quickly some have rushed to condemn the latest open disclosure about a process that appears to be supporting a burgeoning market for human body parts–without keeping the female patient in the loop medically.
Take for example this July 25 Independent Journal Review, which reports that presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is speaking out against the whistleblower’s damaging undercover expose interviews, even though they shed some light on a potential flagrant disregard for women’s medical rights. According to Clinton, the interviews conducted by an anti-abortion organization “falsely portrays Planned Parenthood’s participation in tissue donation programs.”
Yet in both the videos released to date, the executives caught on camera chatting about the business of abortion for the largest provider in the nation make it clear that their organization has a tissue donation program, yet the women who participate cannot really count on their providers to keep them informed about which procedure might be used on them during the abortive process. Will it be the traditional vacuum process (the procedure the women think they are going to have, or will it be the IPAS?, which focuses on retrieving fetal parts in a “less crunchy” way, according to Mary Gatter, Planned Parenthood’s Medical Director Council president.
It is a clear violation of patient consent to decide to switch procedure technique in the operating room (especially for the sole purpose of obtaining a better fetal sample or body part for a research company)–and doing so without advising the patient of the needed change to be made in advance of the act. And if another type of doctor deviated in a hospital operation on a patient in this way (deciding to use a technique not originally discussed or given consent to perform), when it was not a matter of life or death, he would be facing a malpractice lawsuit and worse. Yet a woman undergoing an abortion is being discussed in this second expose video scenario as if her medical rights do not matter since she is aborting the fetus anyway. And Gatter, while admitting a contract exists between the abortion provider and the woman aborting her child (which should dictate the woman be advised of such a major technique change before the procedure), states that when it comes to working with the research tissue collector in such cases in the future–regardless of whether the woman having the abortion knows they are going to allow a different collection technique take place or not, she believes the woman will not “care one iota” about being left in the dark regarding her and the research company’s decision about her body.
The Chicago Tribune lays out an excellent editorial regarding both sides of this important issue for women, concluding with an apt final sentence that sums up the crucial point in this discussion: “Choice is important. So is full knowledge of what you are choosing.” Women who elect to have an abortion should have the assurance that a federally-funded abortion provider is not selling them down the river in regards to their medical rights (and putting their own health at risk for longer collection procedures that financially benefit everyone but them). And the videos being released by the anti-abortion organization–Center for Medical Progress, appears to be highlighting in these undercover sting videos that Planned Parenthood executives are more than willing to provide researchers what they need–at the expense of the women they are being paid to serve. And that should concern all women.