‘They should know better than to peddle statistics based on data that predates the advent of antibiotics…’
(Kaylee McGhee, Liberty Headlines) A Washington Post fact check gave Planned Parenthood President Dr. Leana Wen “Four Pinocchios” for repeatedly and deliberately exaggerating how many women died of abortions before Roe v. Wade made it nationally legal.
Over the past few years, Wen has stated that any attacks on abortion would endanger the health and even lives of women because “attacks on safe, legal abortion care” are attacks on “access to essential health care.”
“We’re not going to go back in time to a time before Roe when thousands of women died every year because they didn’t have access to essential health care,” Wen said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” last week.
Before Roe v. Wade, thousands of women died every year — and because of extreme attacks on safe, legal abortion care, this could happen again right here in America. #WeWontGoBack https://t.co/9orqLaif0J
— Leana Wen, M.D. (@DrLeanaWen) April 24, 2019.
The Post’s Glenn Kessler awarded Wen “Four Pinocchios” for making false claims “derived from data that is decades old.”
“Wen is a doctor, and the ACOG (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists) is made up of doctors,” the Post‘s Glenn Kessler wrote in the fact check. “They should know better than to peddle statistics based on data that predates the advent of antibiotics.
“Even given the fuzzy nature of the data and estimates, there is no evidence that in the years immediately preceding the Supreme Court’s decision, thousands of women died every year in the United States from illegal abortions.”
Even before abortion became a common procedure, researchers have said that the women who died from them were only ever in the hundreds — not the thousands.
“Abortion is no longer a dangerous procedure,” one researcher wrote in 1959, according to the Post. “This applies not just to therapeutic abortions as performed in hospitals but also to so-called illegal abortions as done by physicians. In 1957, there were only 260 deaths in the whole country attributed to abortions of any kind. In New York City in 1921, there were 144 abortion deaths, in 1951 there were only 15.”
Planned Parenthood responded to the Post in a statement by claiming that “stigma, fear, and poor tracking mean we can never know the exact number who suffered before Roe v. Wade was decided.”