Missouri Health Chief Says Planned Parenthood Broke State Abortion Reporting Law

By Cheryl Sullenger

St. Joseph, MO – A statement released last week by the new head of the Missouri Department of Heath and Senior Services indicates that abortion businesses in Missouri broke state law without consequences over a long period of several years.

Dr. Randall W. Williams stated in a May 31, 2017, news release that a law has been on the books since 1979, which required abortion facilities to report all complications to abortions, has been completely ignored over several previous administrations.

“This is unacceptable,” Williams said. “As soon as I became aware of this problem, the Department of Health and Senior Services took steps to ensure future compliance with the law and understanding of the importance of these reports.”

He noted that his department “will rigorously enforce this law in the future.”

Dr. Williams, a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist who practiced for 30 years, as reason to be concerned that there has been no reporting of abortion complications.

The lone abortion facility in Missouri is a Planned Parenthood center in St. Louis where 65 medical emergencies have been documented by Operation Rescue, with the help of local pro-life activists, since 2009. That includes two emergencies this year on March 11 and March 24.

“We had to sue to get the public information about abortion complications at the St. Louis Planned Parenthood. Without that case, the public would have no idea how dangerous the Planned Parenthood abortion facility really is,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue. “We are grateful that there is finally a Director of the Department of Health that takes the law and women’s safety seriously.”

A 2016 State Senate investigation of abortion practices and fetal tissue disposal at Planned Parenthood led by Sen. Kurt Schaefer encountered “stonewalling” by Planned Parenthood and “top officials in [former] Gov. Nixon’s Department of Health and Senior Services.”

Sen. Schaefer’s investigative committee discovered that the St. Louis Planned Parenthood has written protocols for employees to follow in the event of a medical emergency that included requesting ambulances run with no lights or sirens even though it would delay emergency care for their patients.

In addition, Planned Parenthood trained employees to only give very general information to 911 dispatchers, and never mention whether a complication is abortion-related. Employees are instructed to keep emergency responders out of the abortion procedure room (unless necessary).

In the event that an abortion patient experiences a medical emergency after she left the Planned Parenthood facility, she is told to call Planned Parenthood instead of 911.

In a scathing report released in July 2016, the State Senate investigative committee stated:

This level of callous disregard by PPSLR for the safety of women seeking their services in an apparent effort to protect their own business model from being damaged by news of “botched abortions” and patients ending up in the ER is shocking. This kind of deliberate organizational effort to steer patients away from emergency medical treatment may very well constitute medical malpractice and reckless endangerment of the health of patients.

Meanwhile, the Department of Health and Senior Services under Dr. Williams’ predecessor, Gail Vasterling, allowed the St. Louis Planned Parenthood to continue operating despite eight years of failed safety inspections that revealed 39 classes of violations involving 210 incidents – 53% (111) of which were related to failure to provide a safe and sanitary environment.

“We hope Dr. Williams will do his duty to not only enforce the abortion complication reporting law, but also take seriously patient care and facility standards with which Planned Parenthood has repeatedly failed to comply,” said Newman. “The St. Louis Planned Parenthood has arrogantly broken the law for years without consequence. It is such an egregious offender that it is in the interest of public health and safety to shut it down. We urge Dr. Williams to do just that.”

Below is Dr. Williams full press statement dated May 31, 2017:

Statement from the Director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services

Since 1979, Missouri law has required providers of abortion services and those who treat abortion complications to report every complication they diagnose or treat after an abortion to the Department of Health and Senior Services within 45 days.

It has recently come to my attention that this law was not complied with under previous administrations.

This is unacceptable.

As soon as I became aware of this problem, the Department of Health and Senior Services took steps to ensure future compliance with the law and understanding of the importance of these reports.

As a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist who practiced for 30 years, I recognize that every procedure including abortion has recognized risks and potential complications. By the standard of care, these risks should be discussed with the patient prior to the procedure. And when the law requires complications to be reported, each and every complication should be reported.

The Department of Health and Senior Services will rigorously enforce this law in the future.

Randall W. Williams, MD, FACOG

  • Joe Healy

    The question is not so much, “Why hasn’t this been reported in the media?” as why hasn’t this law been enforced and the perpetrators prosecuted?

  • dje3

    So where are the fines? there should be fines initiated plus interest in penalties in accordance with the laws. Ignorance of the law is no excuse in commercial application..even in non-profit.

    In fact, non-profit status can be revoked most likely!

  • don76550

    Why are some of these planned parenthood murderers not in jail for breaking the law?

  • Suzu M

    When they say ‘press release’, how was it released? Was it in well-known newspapers? Was it on the news? We need to be sure it gets seen.
    Meanwhile, I say, “Woohoo!”

  • ADRoberts

    For the murderers at Planned Parenthood, this just make sense. They do not want ANYONE to know how dangerous it is to go to them and how inept they are. And since they had the cover of liberal bureaucrat and politicians, they did not need to report. Time now to file criminal cases as far back as they can. PUT THEM IN JAIL as felons.

  • JoePaul

    Planned Parenthood is more interested in covering their butts than in women’s health. I guess we are lucky they aren’t cutting these women up and discarding them with the baby parts that they don’t sell. The liberal prosecutors and courts protect these animals. Look at California the undercover agents are being prosecuted for exposing Planned Parenthood criminal activity. Arrest and prosecution is a start.

  • boccagalupe

    They are not in jail because they were not prosecuted. They were not prosecuted because the prosecutors were complicit in the crime.
    Gov. Nixon on down do not see the aborted as a Human life. God cannot be a part of his administration.

  • dailyfaith

    Planned Parenthood has been caught in yet another bold face lie since Director Williams publicly exposed their contempt for safety laws. In their response to Dr. Williams, PP said they were not aware of Missouri’s 1979 mandae to report abortion complications. However, in 1979 PP sued the state of MO to challenge this very safety law AND LOST THE LAWSUIT! What level of exploting MO women is now revealed by saying they did not know about the law! What does this lie say of PP’s value of the women they treat, especially of the 66 they’ve sent to the hospital under emergency 911 calls and the 88 others discovered that, though not requiring a 911 ambulance transport, did required hospital treatment post abortion! We call for the closing of this unsafe, unethical, and immoral business.

  • Vivavox

    It is good to see a director who has a backbone and will finally lead this department as it should have been. I hope Dr. Williams is able to educate the PP sympathizers in the legislative branch who obstruct bills to protect women’s health.

    Given their abysmal safety record, it is amazing that David Eisenberg, Colleen McNicholas, and their PP minions have the audacity to show up at legislative hearings and testify with a straight face. Not only that, they spin ambulance calls as proof of caring about women (aka We didn’t let her die.) If you ask me, she would prefer not being injured in the first place and incurring the additional pain and expense.

    If PP in St. Louis cannot get its own house in order, they should be prevented from exporting substandard care elsewhere.