A new report from Operation Rescue, a pro-life organization so dedicated to opposing abortion that it purchased an abortion business and closed it down, reveals a new money-maker for Planned Parenthood: abortions by long distance.

Planned Parenthood, the largest player in America’s abortion industry, has installed the procedure at its Iowa locations. In a tape of a telephone conversation obtained by Operation Rescue, an abortion company spokeswoman explains the process.

“The physician doesn’t actually come,” the abortion company worker explains. “The physician who prescribes you the medication would be on a computer screen. You’ll be on a computer screen. You can see each other and communicate. They’re just not physically there.

“You would press a button that’s on the screen and a little box would open up with the medication in it.”

Listen to the call:

“The telemed abortion presents risks to women’s lives and health that are completely unacceptable,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “The lack of access to a licensed physician throughout this risky and painful abortion process is shocking and likely illegal. Money obviously means more to Planned Parenthood than the lives and safety of women.”

The report was compiled by Cheryl Sullenger, senior policy adviser for Operation Rescue.

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“‘Telemed’ is short for the term telemedicine, whereby medical consults occur with the aid of electronic communications. It is used legitimately in the medical field to lower the cost of consultations with specialist and exchange medical information between physicians electronically. Telemedicine has also been successfully used in legitimate medical practices for such things as history review, psychiatric evaluations and ophthalmology assessments,” she documents. “However, telemedicine, or care in absentia, was never meant as a replacement for the personal, hands-on examination by a physician.”

She said Planned Parenthood in Iowa is taking the process “to an all new and dangerous level.”

Operation Rescue’s investigation, Sullenger said, found that Planned Parenthood of the Heartland offers medical abortions in 16 clinics around Iowa, “but only four of the clinics actually have doctors. At the other 12, smaller clinics, telemed abortions have become routine.”

“After the brief teleconference, the dangerous abortion drug RU486, also known as Mifepristone, and its counterpart, Methotrexate, are prescribed. The drugs are then administered to the patient by a nurse or ‘clinician’ who may or may not be licensed. The patient presses a button an on computer screen that opens a box containing the abortion drugs. The patient is never physically examined by the medical doctor prescribing the drugs – or any other, for that matter – and never sees the abortionist again,” the report said.

The Operation Rescue report cited the eight abortion deaths and more than 1,100 serious complications that have resulted in the U.S. alone from the use of Mifepristone.

“Described by one Planned Parenthood receptionist as a ‘self-induced miscarriage,’ the medical abortion process takes days, can be very painful, and involves heavy bleeding and cramping until the pre-born baby is expelled. Yet, the only follow-up offered by Planned Parenthood is a recommended appointment in ‘two or three weeks’ after the abortion where a second ultrasound is offered to make sure the ‘pregnancy no longer exists,” Sullenger’s report warned.

“I cannot imagine a woman going through the process of miscarriage, either natural or forced, and not having access to a physician, especially for follow-up care,” said Newman. “Any number of things could go wrong, and to never actually be seen by a licensed doctor during the entire process seems risky at best, grossly negligent, and perhaps criminal.”

He report noted Iowa law requires abortions be done only by “licensed physicians.”

But another audio recording obtained by Operation Rescue and posted on its website revealed that doctors are not on site.

“Some of our sites are called telemed, which there is not a doctor on site. All instructions would be given through teleconferencing and there’s a nurse there to answer any questions,” the recording reveals Planned Parenthood confirming.

And will the attendant even be a licensed nurse?

“The term ‘nurse’ is used loosely by abortion clinics. More often than not, what they refer to as a ‘nurse’ is really an unlicensed worker with little education or training,” said Newman. “It is actually very rare to find an abortion clinic that employs registered nurses or even licensed practical nurses, because they drive up the costs and drive down the profit margin.”

Planned Parenthood did not respond to a WND request for comment.

But to Operation Rescue, Planned Parenthood said, “There’s nurses there. Nurses, mp’s and doctor – er, sorry, clinicians. There wouldn’t be anything to go wrong in the medical procedure because you don’t do anything with that right away. You get one pill there in the clinic and that pill stops the pregnancy from growing. Then they give you four more pills, and those pills they send you home with, and they’ll give you the instructions on how and when you would take those.”

Further, Operation Rescue reported in Iowa, insurance companies are being billed for abortions at the rate of $1,000, “two and a half times greater than the national average (of $390) – with a fraction of the cost.”

“Planned Parenthood of the Heartland is making a killing on medical abortions,” said Newman. “Think about it. They are charging by far the highest price in the nation, but at perhaps the lowest overhead costs. They don’t have the expense of having to pay for a doctor on site or pay for traveling expenses. The abortionist never leaves Des Moines. That”s how they can afford to keep abortion clinics running in small towns such as Spencer, Storm Lake, and Ankeny.”

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