NEW YORK (AP) — Anti-abortion activists on Tuesday released an undercover video showing a senior Planned Parenthood official discussing the disposition of parts from aborted fetuses.
The activists contended the video reveals illegalities, but Planned Parenthood said the activity in question was the legal, not-for-profit donation of fetal tissue to research firms.
The video was made covertly last year, depicting a lunchtime conversation between Dr. Deborah Nucatola, Planned Parenthood's senior director of medical services, and anti-abortion activists posing as potential buyers for a human biologics company.
Nucatola is heard in the video referring to fetal hearts, lungs and livers and to efforts to retrieve these organs intact rather than crush them during an abortion procedure.
Commercial sale of human fetal tissue is illegal under federal law, but non-commercial tissue donation is allowed if the woman undergoing an abortion gives her consent.
In the video, Nucatola is heard giving a range of monetary estimates. According to Planned Parenthood, which has national offices in New York and Washington, D.C., the doctor "was speculating on the range of reimbursement that affiliates can receive after patients state they wish to donate tissue after a procedure."
"At several of our health centers, we help patients who want to donate tissue for scientific research, and we do this just like every other high-quality health care provider does — with full, appropriate consent from patients and under the highest ethical and legal standards," Planned Parenthood spokesman Eric Ferrero said.
Ferrero said there's no financial benefit for tissue donation for the patient or for Planned Parenthood.
"In some instances, actual costs, such as the cost to transport tissue to leading research centers, are reimbursed, which is standard across the medical field," he said in a statement.
That point also is conveyed by Nucatola, who says in the video, "This is not something with any revenue stream that affiliates are looking at — this is a way to offer patients the services they want and do good for the medical community."
The video was produced by the Irvine, California-based Center for Medical Progress, which released it in collaboration with several national anti-abortion organizations that called for a congressional investigation.
In Louisiana, Gov. Bobby Jindal, who is among the large field of Republican presidential candidates, directed the state health department to launch an investigation even though Planned Parenthood doesn't perform abortions there.
The founder of the Center for Medical Progress, David Daleiden, previously worked with the anti-abortion group Live Action, which has released several undercover videos aimed at discrediting Planned Parenthood.
Ferrero said the new video "falsely portrays Planned Parenthood's participation in tissue donation programs that support lifesaving scientific research."
"Similar false accusations have been put forth by opponents of abortion services for decades," he said. "These groups have been widely discredited, and their claims fall apart on closer examination, just as they do in this case."
Daleiden said the new video is the first in a planned series that culminates a nearly three-year investigation.
"Planned Parenthood's criminal conspiracy to make money off of aborted baby parts reaches to the very highest levels of their organization," he said. "Elected officials must listen to the public outcry for Planned Parenthood to be held accountable to the law."
Copyright 2015 The Associated Press.
SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) - At least two people were taken to area hospitals after a dispute between neighbors in Chula Vista led to gunfire. Chula Vista Police Department officers responded to the incident near Monterey Avene and E. J Street. in Chula Vista at around 10:28 p.m. One victim was taken to UCSD Medical Center and another was taken to Scripps Mercy Hospital. Check back for updates on this breaking news story.
Coronado won't be joining Imperial Beach in its federal lawsuit against the International Water and Boundary Commission, but it will assist its coastal neighbor with legal fees and lobbying with the federal government.
The death toll continues to rise as the result of a magnitude 7.1 earthquake that rocked central Mexico on Tuesday.
Travis Wood came up with an outing nothing like his recent ones and he led the San Diego Padres to a 6-2 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night.
Four City Council members released a new proposal for regulating short-term vacation rental properties in San Diego on Tuesday in an attempt to solve an issue that has vexed city officials and neighbors alike over the last few years.
As part of its combat against the hepatitis A outbreak, the city of San Diego has set up several vaccination sites. Hepatitis A is spread through contaminated food and contact with contaminated people. Good hand hygiene helps prevent contamination, and the vaccines can prevent the illness altogether.
Patients at Rady Children's Hospital have a new way of getting to operating rooms. They can now drive and can choose from a BMW, a Mercedes or a Lamborghini - all battery-powered, of course. It's all thanks to a donation from the San Diego regional law enforcement agencies. News 8's Shawn Styles explains.
A Northern California school board voted unanimously to keep its literature policies following months of controversy over a book about a transgender child that a teacher read to a kindergarten class.
As of Tuesday, you can finally get a whiff of the infamous "Corpse Flower" at the San Diego Botanic Garden in Encinitas. It attracts crowds because of its strong, terrible smell that can last hours. The flower's bloom will only last for about 2 days. So if you're interested in smelling the unusual specimen, time is running out.