Who Are the Abortionists at Missouri’s Last Abortion Facility and Why Have They Refused to Cooperate With Licensing Officials?

By Cheryl Sullenger

St. Louis, MO – The Reproductive Health Planned Parenthood in St. Louis, Missouri, is considered to be the most dangerous abortion facility in the U.S. due to the increasing frequency with which ambulances that have transported women from that abortion facility, including three within a recent 22-day time span.

It is the last remaining abortion facility in the state.

RHS Planned Parenthood has been involved in a licensing investigation since it failed an annual inspection in March. Investigators with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services were blocked from interviewing all but two of the clinic’s seven licensed physicians that conduct abortions and who were involved in patient “outcomes” that required investigation.  Three of those, which the DHSS was unable to interview, included resident trainees from Washington University in St. Louis.

Without RHS Planned Parenthood’s compliance with licensing requirements and its refusal to cooperate with the investigation, there were no plans for the DHSS to renew its license after it expired on Friday, May 31, 2019.

However, on Friday, Judge Michael Stelzer issued a temporary restraining order preventing the facility license from expiring until a hearing on a preliminary injunction can be heard on June 4, 2019. 

So, who are the physicians conducting abortions at RHS Planned Parenthood that have landed at least part of the 74 women in the hospital due to botched or otherwise complicated abortions? 

While the names of all seven abortionists are not publicly known, there are three that are.

The Medical Director at RHS Planned Parenthood is David Eisenberg.  He is listed an Associate Professor at Washington University Medical School in St. Louis. 

His colleagues at Washington University’ Family Planning department include Colleen McNicholas and Tessa E. Madden.  Both McNicholas and Madden also conduct abortions at RHS Planned Parenthood with Eisenberg.

Madden is the Chief of the Family Planning Department at Washington University and is likely responsible for sending residents to RHS Planned Parenthood for abortion training.

Madden was said to have been on duty at RHS Planned Parenthood during medical emergencies that took place on May 15 and April 24, 2019.

McNicholas was embroiled in a controversy at the Columbia Planned Parenthood in 2015 when it was discovered that she had submitted “refer and follow” privileges that did not allow her to treat patients at University Hospital in Columbia, as full hospital privileges. Her so-called “privileges” were then used to license the Columbia Planned Parenthood for abortions.  Once the deception was uncovered, the University of Missouri terminated McNicholas’ phony “refer and follow” privileges and the Columbia Planned Parenthood was forced to halt abortions.

On May 16, 2019, Eisenberg sat down for a revealing interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour.

Eisenberg’s statements explained a lot about why things have gone so wrong at RHS and why Planned Parenthood is not cooperating with the DHSS investigation.

Stacked courts?

Eisenberg indicated that he attended the University of Alabama Medical School where volunteered as a patient escort at the Planned Parenthood in Birmingham.

Some of Eisenburg’s statements during that interview bordered on the absurd.  When discussing the recent passage of abortion bans in Alabama, Missouri and other states, he noted, “We know the courts have been stacked against us.”

Actually, it is the habit of abortion businesses to appeal to the courts to overturn pro-life legislation because the courts are generally biased in favor of abortion.  In fact, it has long been a disturbing fact that the will of the states as expressed by two consenting houses and a governor has often been thwarted by one solitary judge at the federal, state, or even the county level.

Above the law

Eisenberg also indicated at he believes he is above the law as an abortion provider.

“I will tell you that it’s not about the law for me when it comes to the patient that’s in front of me.  My patient doesn’t care what the laws says.  What she knows is she doesn’t want to be pregnant and she’s looking for care,” Eisenberg said.

At a press conference held at RHS Planned Parenthood on May 31, 2019, Eisenberg doubled down on his statement that he is above the law.

“We will not stop at anything to ensure that every patient can continue to have access to comprehensive routine care including safe legal abortion,” he said.

Not stop at anything? Including breaking the law? Apparently so.  At his press conference on May 28, 2019, Gov. Mike Parsons stated that during an annual inspection in March 2019, inspectors found several deficiencies of state laws and regulations that required correction prior to the renewal of their RHS Planned Parenthood’s facility license.

Eisenberg’s haughty attitude is likely why RHS Planned Parenthood is refusing to cooperate with aspects of the DHSS investigation and why so many violations have been found at that facility.

Failed inspections

While the results of the March 2019 inspection have not yet been made public, inspection reports going back years are readily available.  They indicate a pattern of health and safety violations and instances where the law is completely ignored.

RHS Planned Parenthood’s 2018 inspection report showed 27 pages of violations, including findings that staff failed to follow acceptable standards of practice for hand hygiene, something they were cited for in 2017 as well, when Eisenberg “questioned if hand hygiene between glove changes was a new standard” and inquired whose standard it was when challenged by a DHSS inspector who caught him failing to wash his hands.

(Properly washing hands between glove changes has long been a nationally recognized standard from the Centers for Disease Control.)

They were also cited for several other infection control violations that had the possibility of affecting the 315 abortion patients seen at RHS Planned Parenthood each month.

Violations of the law

The 2018 inspection also cited the abortion facility for failing to comply with state regulations that require women undergo a pelvic examination prior to medication abortions.  This regulation was cited again by Gov. Parson as one that RHS Planned Parenthood was in continued non-compliance.

Medical Director David Eisenberg told health inspectors a year ago that pelvic exams on women receiving medication abortions were not medically necessary in his opinion, therefore none of the abortionists he oversaw complied with this regulation.

Eisenberg’s actions and his words indicate clearly that he has every intention of defying the law and regulations in Missouri if he disagrees with them. 

Not-so-safe abortions

When asked at the May 31, 2019, press conference about the documented 74 ambulance visits that have transported women from RHS Planned Parenthood to the hospital, Eisenberg pretended to not know why the health inspectors were investigating then said that less than half of those incidents were related to abortion patients, then

“Eisenberg’s arrogant defiance of the law makes him a danger to the public,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman.  “His ideas of so-called patient safety are outside the norm, and we have every reason to believe he is lying about abortion-related medical emergencies at RHS Planned Parenthood, based on documentation we have received from the St. Louis Fire Department, which contradicts his statements.”

For example, one list of medical emergencies released to Operation Rescue by the St. Louis Fire Department listed 58 incidents of medical emergencies, including the following:

• Abdominal Pain – 2 incidents
• Allergic Reaction – 1 incident
• Fainting (Alert and Not Alert) – 6 incidents
• Fall – 4 incidents
• Hemorrhage (Dangerous or Possibly Dangerous) – 23 incidents
• Interfacility Emergency – 4 incidents
• Pregnancy Unknown Status – 2 incidents
• Psychiatric/Suicidal – 3 incidents
• Seizure – 3 incidents
• Sick – 5 incidents
• Stroke – 1 incident
• Unconscious Person – 1 incident

It is likely that incidents such as the stroke or perhaps psychiatric incidents may not have applied to abortion patients, but it is sure that the 23 hemorrhages did.  Abdominal pain, allergic reactions fainting falls, seizures, and unconscious persons are all documented complications that have been experienced by women having abortions, according to Operation Rescue’s documentation of medical emergencies at abortion facilities around the nation.

“I’m a scientist.”

During the CNN interview, Eisenberg frequently stated his qualifications that make him a supposed “expert” in a number of fields.

“I am a healthcare provider. I’m a public health expert. I’m a scientist. I’m an educator at medical schools,” he stated before launching into an attack on those who oppose abortion as science deniers.

“It’s really hard to have this conversation with people who don’t believe in science, who don’t believe in the evidence-based practice of medicine, because they approach the world with a religious faith that –despite all evidence to the contrary – they continue to believe their world view.”

Eisenberg, the “scientist,” concludes his CNN interview with a statement that is anything but a scientific.

“This is about the status of people who can become pregnant – mostly women – in this country,” said Eisenberg.

However, science is very clear that only biological women can become pregnant.  Women who identify as “men” have become pregnant, but they are still biologically female.  It is a fact that biological men lack the internal organs required for pregnancy.

“Perhaps it is Eisenberg that clings to a fanciful world-view with religious fervor,” said Newman. “I am a Christian, yet I know that science says that when a sperm and an egg join, a new individual human being is created with different DNA than the mother.  That living human being, even if he or she suffers disabilities, deserves to live as much as I do or anyone else does.  I also believe that injuring women during abortions at the rate we are seeing at RHS Planned Parenthood shows that abortions are not safe, certainly not for the growing human being in the womb, but also not for the mothers who have been hospitalized with often life-threatening abortion complications.  Laws that protect women from this kind of butchery are more than precautionary.  They are necessary.”

RHS Planned Parenthood will return to Judge Stelzer’s courtroom on Monday, June 4, 2019, at 9:00 a.m. for a hearing on their motion for a preliminary injunction against the DHSS.  Operation Rescue will post updates on this hearing as they become available.