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Ex-Planned Parenthood President Richards announces she has incurable brain cancer

Richards is still discussing abortion strategy with movement leaders and working on her abortion information bot.

Published: January 29, 2024 8:47am

Updated: January 29, 2024 1:26pm

Former Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards made public this weekend that has been diagnosed with glioblastoma, an incurable brain cancer. 

After receiving the diagnosis six months ago, Richards first publicly disclosed her illness Sunday to New York Magazine's The Cut.

Although her form of brain cancer has a median survival rate of 15 months, Richards says she is "doing really well" and still "having fun" and working while participating in a clinical trial with twice-weekly infusions.

Richards also said she's supporting the abortion "war effort" despite her illness.

Richards served as president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the organization's political action committee for 12 years until she stepped down in 2018. 

Her work supporting abortion access did not stop after she left the organization, and she is still focusing on the issue despite her unfavorable diagnosis. 

Richards said she is still working on Charley, which is a bot she co-created to help abortion seekers receive information about how to obtain the procedure. 

Richards is also discussing strategy with movement leaders. She says that she thinks Republicans should be constantly asked about women who suffer medical emergencies or die because they could not obtain an abortion, something that is likely to be a prominent issue in the 2024 election. 

"We hear a tragic story, or another woman becomes a plaintiff in Texas, and then we move on. It has got to be repetition every f***ing day because there is no answer," Richards told the New York outlet.  "And look at the Republicans. They are running and hiding on this issue."

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