NRL News

Delaware PPFA abortionist brushes off charges he is “an immediate danger to the public”

by | Jun 3, 2013

By Dave Andrusko

Former Planned Parenthood nurses Jayne Mitchell-Werbrich (left)  and Joyce Vasikonis were sharply critical of Planned Parenthood of Delaware in testified given Wednesday. Photo credit: GARY EMEIGH/THE NEWS JOURNAL

Former Planned Parenthood nurses Jayne Mitchell-Werbrich (left) and Joyce Vasikonis were sharply critical of Planned Parenthood of Delaware in testified given Wednesday. Photo credit: GARY EMEIGH/THE NEWS JOURNAL

I was stunned, to be honest, by the interview/profile/news analysis story of abortionist Timothy Liveright that ran over the weekend in the [Delaware] News Journal for reasons that will become clear in just a second.

But I was astonished to see USA Today reprint the story written by Cris Barrish and Beth Miller in Monday’s edition, complete with a link to selected audio from the two former Planned Parenthood nurses who blew the whistle both on Liveright and the Delaware PPFA abortion clinics where he had piled his ugly trade. Of course no words on a printed page (or your monitor) can do justice to hearing even snippets from Joyce Vasikonis and Jayne Mitchell-Werbrich at an ad hoc hearing held last Wednesday by Delaware State Senators Robert Venables (D) and Greg Lavelle (R).

Mitchell-Werbrich called the situation at PPFA of Delaware “an absolute nightmare”

Back to the story by Barrish and Miller. We’re told that this 1,521 word-long piece is the product of three lengthy interviews with the paper in which the 68-year-old Liveright (a) defended his record as an abortionist, (b) painted Planned Parenthood across the nation in glowing colors at the same time (c) he threw the Delaware branch under the bus.

Liveright is a classic abortion circuit rider, having “performed about 50,000 abortions across the country throughout nearly three-plus decades, most recently for Planned Parenthood of Delaware.” He defended himself vigorously in the interviews, saying that he was being made a “scapegoat” for the problems at the Delaware PPFA clinics.

As it happened “Liveright spoke to the newspaper just hours before state prosecutors filed a four-page civil complaint with Delaware’s medical disciplinary board that portrayed him as a doctor who engaged in shoddy, dangerous medical practices and unspecified sexual misconduct at Planned Parenthood,” Barrish and Miller report.­ The state Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline State charged him with “incompetence and negligence” and of being an “immediate danger to the public”

As we reported last week Liveright stands accused of

“oversedating patients, performing unnecessary suction procedures, causing at least one perforation during surgery, and failing to act with proper competence and diligence to avoid unnecessary complications that resulted in patients requiring emergency hospital treatment.”

Liveright was also “reprimanded by Planned Parenthood in March of last year for unprofessional conduct that included sexually harassing female employees and ‘yelling, screaming, and cursing’ in front of patients and employees,” Miller reported in an earlier story. Among the 22 categories of problems Vasikonis testified about was sexual (and racial) harassment.

Mitchell-Werbrich testified that “one abortion would be completed every 8-10 minutes” at the Wilmington PPFA site—evidence of what she called its “meat-market style assembly line abortions.” In Sunday’s story, we learn that “for the past few years [Liveright] has flown his single-engine plane [from Pennsylvania] to Delaware about once a week to work at clinics in Wilmington and Dover. He’d perform as many as 30 abortions a day, he said, making about $60 per procedure and from $5,000 to $10,000 a month, depending on demand.”

The investigation of the Delaware branch was triggered by “abortions, including some done by Liveright, in which bleeding or other complications occurred and injured patients had to be rushed to the emergency room,” we’re told. In April the state Division of Public Health cited 14 violations and said inspectors found “unsafe and unsanitary conditions.” At the same time Liveright described PPFA across the nation as a “noble organization,” he “contends the Delaware agency is plagued by management, staffing and operational problems.”

As we reported last week, Liveright sent a letter to state officials in April saying he had retired from practicing medicine in Delaware and that he “[had] no intentions of ever seeking practice there in the future.” [He still has an active license to practice medicine in Pennsylvania.]

But Delaware authorities are taking no chances. They are seeking a permanent revocation of Liveright’s medical license and the complaint against him will still be heard by the state medical disciplinary board, even though he has turned in his license.

“Based on respondent’s serious and repeated acts of misconduct, unprofessional conduct, incompetence and negligence and that respondent has active medical licenses in Delaware and Pennsylvania, respondent presents a clear and immediate danger to the public,” the complaint states.


Liveright did not deny Mitchell-Werbrich allegation that he left the clinic last June to tend to an emergency mechanical situation with his plane while patients — already medicated and awaiting procedures — sat in the waiting room. Two patients later were brought to the recovery room after “roaming outside confused and dazed,” she said.

His response? “Everybody has had emergencies — physicians of all stripes,” he told Barrish and Miller. “Nobody’s life was threatened by that. A few might have had to wait an extra hour.”

How about the charge by Mitchell-Werbrich that while he was performing abortions he “would chant hymns, including one with the lyrics: ‘Jesus, oh Jesus, take the sinners down by the river, oh Jesus’”?

Liveright said he “tries to put patients at ease” by “humming a song, telling a joke, talking about their country of origin.”

Did I mention that in his spare time he played the role of an abortionist in the 2010 movie, “Blue Valentine”?

The story concludes with Liveright, again, distancing himself from any responsibility.

“Liveright said the two nurses had legitimate concerns — not about him, but about Planned Parenthood itself.

“’Planned Parenthood is partly to blame for all of this,’ he said. ‘They’ve allowed this circus to continue. It’s partly because they never listened to these women to begin with.’

“Liveright promised to clear his name but said he bears no ill will toward the agency.

“’Oh sure,’ he said. ‘I don’t take this personally.””­

You can hear brief portions of the nurses’ testimony here.

Categories: PPFA