Laura Bassett: Obama Moves To Protect Planned Parenthood Funding, Permanently
The Obama administration has proposed a new rule that would prevent states from defunding Planned Parenthood or any other family planning provider for political reasons. The new rule which the Department of Health and Human Services proposed last week, says that states cannot withhold Title X federal family planning money from certain recipients for any reason other than the “provider’s ability to deliver services to program beneficiaries in an effective manner.” That means states can no longer vote to defund Planned Parenthood because some of its clinics offer abortion services.
“This will make a real difference in so many people’s lives,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood. “Thanks to the Obama administration, women will still be able to access the birth control they need to plan their families, and the cancer screenings they need to stay healthy.” The Title X program provides basic preventive health care and family planning services for 4 million low-income Americans. About 85 percent of patients who use Title X have incomes below $23,500. Planned Parenthood serves about a third of those patients, using the $70 million a year it receives in Title X grants to subsidize contraceptives and cancer and sexually transmitted infection screenings for people who can’t afford them.