The big loser in Planned Parenthood’s organ harvesting bonanza

The recent Planned Parenthood undercover videos have created quite a stir on social media. The Topsy tracking website records more than 134,000 uses of #PlannedParenthood on Twitter in the last two weeks alone.

Some are saying it’s not illegal in an effort to protect the country’s largest abortion provider. Legislation has been introduced to defund Planned Parenthood.

The Center for Medical Progress is not the first organization to run an undercover sting operation on the harvesting of fetal tissue. ABC’s 20/20 did a very similar thing in 2000 when partial-birth abortion was being debated on The Hill. A congressional hearing followed. An amicus brief was filled with the Supreme Court. A lengthy story appeared in World magazine.

Planned Parenthood is using the exact same loophole in 2015 as was used by clinics and middlemen in 2000 and earlier. Joe Carter explains the law:

42 U.S. Code 289g covers the prohibitions regarding human fetal tissue and states that, “It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration if the transfer affects interstate commerce.”

In each of these laws, the term “valuable consideration” does not include “reasonable payments associated with the transportation, implantation, processing, preservation, quality control, or storage of human fetal tissue.”

In other words, the organs, arms, legs, muscle, etc, cannot be “sold.” Only fees related to processing and transportation can be charged. This is what Planned Parenthood alleges, but is it true?

Almost certainly not.

ABC’s 20/20 reported the use of “middle men” who created a facade of profit-free transactions (see transcript in the amicus brief above). The Anatomic Gift Foundation, Inc, and Opening Lines (Illinois, now defunct) were reported as two such middle-men. If the fetus or fetal tissue were “donated” by the patient, then the middle man “sold” the tissue to a lab for someone approximating cost recovery, no “valuable consideration” was paid. Middle-man pays the Planned Parenthood clinic (and other clinics) a transportation, process, quality control fee. The lab on the other end pays the middle man for the same process.

But no one does anything for free. This includes the middle-man, and it includes Planned Parenthood.

Page 20A of the amicus brief filed before the Supreme Court shows a pricing list used by Opening Lines in or around the year 2000 (photocopy). Part of it reads:

Unprocessed Specimen (> 8 weeks) $70

Unprocessed Specimen (≤ 8 weeks) $50

Livers (≤ 8 weeks) 30% discount if significantly fragmented $150

Livers (> 8 weeks) 30% discount if significantly fragmented $125

Spleens (≤ 8 weeks) $75

Spleens (> 8 weeks) $50

Pancreas (≤ 8 weeks) $100

Pancreas (> 8 weeks) $75

Thymus (≤ 8 weeks) $100

Thymus (> 8 Weeks) $75

Intestines & Mesentary $50

Mesentary (≤ 8 weeks) $125

Mesentary (> 8 weeks) $100

Kidney with/without adrenal (≤ 8 weeks) $125

Kidney with/without adrenal (> 8 weeks) $100

The list echoes Dr. Nucatola’s statement of having a list of things she needs to preserve on any given day. In the same brochure, Opening Lines claimed a daily, national case volume of 1,500. That’s one thousand, five hundred cases of tissue and organs being shipped every single day.

When Chris Wallace interviewed an undercover operative on 20/20, he asked was there any way to justify prices of $325 – $999 for fetal organs. Operative: “No. There is not.” Wallace: “So what does this price represent?” Operative: “That represents greed.”

Appendix D on page 24A covers the procedure for the removal of eyes of a 15 week old fetus.

PROTOCOL FOR THE RECOVERY OF EYES

A. DONOR SPECIFICATIONS

1. AGE 15.22 WEEKS

2. GENDER: MALE/FEMALE

B. EYE RECOVERY

1. IDENTIFY THE. EYES

2. USING CURVED IRIS SCISSORS AND A BLUNT DISSECTION TECHNIQUE EXPOSE THE TENDONS AND ITS MUSCLE

3. TRANSECT THE MUSCLE IN THE AREA OF LATERAL, MEDIAL AND INFERIOR LOWER PART OF THE RECTUS MUSCLES

4. RETURN THE LATERAL SIDE OF THE EYE. EXPOSE THE OPTIC NERVE

5. USING A CURVED IRUS CUT TO THE BAR BACK OF THE OPTIC NERVE

6. REMOVE THE EYE BY USING FORCLIPS WITH TEETH, BY HOLDING ON TO THE OPTIC NERVE OR RECTUS MUSCLES

7. PLACE THE RECOVERED EYES IN STERILE DISH TO EXAMINE. IF ARE ANY LACERATIONS TO THE EYES.

8. IF LACERATIONS ARE ON THE EYES PLASE SEE RECOVERY SITUATIONS FOR DI VIATIONS.

9. PLACE EYE INTO PROPER MEDIUM RE- SEARCHER REQUESTS.

10. MAKE SURE SPECIMEN # IS ON THE SPECI- MEN TUBE AND WRITTEN ON PROPER FORM.

PERI FILM TUBE-PLACE SPECIMEN TUBE INTO ZIP LOCK BAG WITH RESEARCHER NAME ON BAG.

One of the modern, fast-growing “middle-man” companies is StemExpress. This California based  “bio-medical company…provides qualified research laboratories with human cells, fluids, blood and tissue products [including fetal tissue and organs].” StemExpress is involved with Planned Parenthood as a purchaser of these materials.

Last week, Ed Stetzer’s Exchange blog posted a copy of the brochure StemExpress uses to promote itself. On the front page they assert using their service is “financially profitable” to clinics. The second page includes a glowing recommendation from Dr. Dorothy Furgerson, Planned Parenthood Mar Monte. The third page encourages joining “the StemExpress partner program that fiscally rewards clinics.” A sub-head in the brochure brags of “Financial Profits” followed by “providing a financial benefit to your clinic” and “contributing to the fiscal growth of your own clinic.” It’s a sales pitch to increase revenue. Reimbursed shipping and processing costs are not fiscal rewards. Those things do not add to a clinic’s profitability.

The clinics make a profit off “donated” tissue. Does the middle-man? You bet.

In the video with Dr. Deborah Nucatola, StemExpress is specifically mentioned as a partner. Numbers like $50 and $100 for various organs are mentioned in both videos. That represents the amount paid by the middle-men to the clinics. But, what kind of “reimbursement and transportation” costs are made by companies like StemExpress? It can be substantial: up to $2,945 for fetal bone marrow. That is, if you still believe no “valuable consideration” is involved.

It looks like StemExpress could, in theory, pay a hundred or so bucks for a whole organ, then mete it out by cells for thousands of dollars per sale.

Not a bad haul for donations.

So the clinics make money, the middle men make money, many of the research labs are studying with the hopes of making money off future drug developments.

Who doesn’t make money? Well, the patient. That’s who. Why? Because it’s illegal to sell fetal tissue.

Think about it: If a woman came to Planned Parenthood and said, “I need to buy a car. Can I have an abortion and sell my child for a few grand?” Planned Parenthood would answer, “No, I’m sorry. It is against the law to sell fetal tissue from abortion.”

But what if a Planned Parenthood director wanted to buy, say, a Lamborghini? Same pitch. “Ma’am, I’m sorry. You cannot sell your baby’s tissue for money. But, you can donate the tissue for medical research and you’ll be helping develop lifesaving drugs.”

And, guess who makes the money and buys the car? Yep. Some Planned Parenthood director. Not the “poor woman in need.”

And, don’t forget, this is after the patient pays hundreds if not upwards of a thousand dollars to Planned Parenthood for the abortion that provides PP an additional opportunity to “fiscally benefit” their clinics by selling the very organs that was illegal for the woman herself to sell.

Fetal organ harvesting helps explain whey the abortion industry fought tooth-and-nail for partial-birth abortion. It’s one of the processes Nucatola described in the first video. Fetal organ harvesting isn’t about women’s rights. It is about pristine organs sold for top dollar, pure and simple. It’s about greed, not the woman in need.

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Featured image credit

Marty Duren

Just a guy writing some things.

One Pingback/Trackback

  • Excellent essay. Many thanks. Godspeed.

  • Pingback: Megyn Kelly | There is, indeed, money in Planned Parenthood’s baby-harvesting.()

  • David McKissack

    Copied from Red State:

    “Someone needs to file a class-action lawsuit on behalf of all the
    women who’ve gotten abortions at Planned Parenthood, seeking a % of any
    money earned from selling baby organs.

    Such a lawsuit would involve thousands of plaintiffs, much like the asbestos, tobacco, and utility overcharging lawsuits. I doubt anyone on this site hasn’t at
    some point in their life received a check for some miniscule amount from
    a utility company, based on a settlement of a lawsuit for overcharging
    customers.

    While the notion of representing these women might be
    disgusting, the legal discovery process might be the most powerful event
    ever to occur in the history of abortion in this country. It would
    entail deposing Planned Parenthood officials on every aspect of their
    baby part selling operation. It could be even more revealing than these
    videos.”

  • Joe Blackmon

    Marty, over this past week God has convicted me of how hatefully I’ve talked to people online. I would like to ask your forgiveness and apologize for how mean and spiteful I’ve been when I’ve talked to you. I’m very sorry.

    • martyduren

      Joe-
      Absolutely. Thank you for your gracious approach. Blessings.