State investigators swoop into Planned Parenthood offices

San Antonio Express News, Oct 22, 2015

In a surprise visit, three inspectors from the Texas Health and Human Service’s Office of Inspector General showed up at the local Planned Parenthood affiliate at 9 a.m. Thursday, demanding thousands of pages of documents regarding patient Medicaid records stretching back five years. In apparently coordinated moves, Planned Parenthood clinics in Houston, Dallas and Brownsville were also visited by state investigators, 

all bearing identical subpoenas asking for the documents that contain such information as physician orders, nurse’s notes and laboratory results. Jeffrey Hons, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood South Texas in San Antonio, said in an afternoon news conference that Planned Parenthood complies with all state laws and regulations and that his organization would make “every reasonable effort” to respond to the records demand, but that 24 hours wasn’t enough time. The state demanded confidential information on clinic staff — including birth dates, Social Security numbers, home addresses and employment history — a request that didn’t strike Hons as “reasonable.” During the two-hour visit at the new Planned Parenthood clinic on Babcock Road, which opened several months ago, investigators specifically asked to see the ambulatory surgical center, where abortions are performed — despite that the clinics by law receive no Medicaid funding for abortion, Hons said. In its move to oust Planned Parenthood from Medicaid, the state cited an undercover video that it said revealed program violations at a Houston clinic, including altering abortion procedures to preserve fetal tissue for medical research. Ken S. Lambrecht, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas, said inspectors at the Dallas administrative office asked for thousands of pages of documents that are spread among nearly a dozen health center locations/medical record storage sites throughout Central and North Texas.