Poughkeepsie, NY—Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley denounces the U.S. House of Representatives passage of Rep. Mike Pence’s (R-IN) amendment to bar Planned Parenthood from receiving federal funds for any purpose, including providing basic primary and lifesaving preventive health care to women and families. Rep. Pence offered the amendment to the FY11 Continuing Resolution, which completely eliminates the national family planning program Title X.
Many in the mid-Hudson Valley have come to rely on Planned Parenthood for primary and preventive health care, including lifesaving cancer screenings, and family planning visits. In 2010, Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley alone saw 17, 887 individual patients in six health centers located in Dutchess, Orange, Sullivan and Ulster counties.
Almost 60% of those visits were covered by Title X Funding. Virtually all of the Title X funded visits were for preventive health care services such as pap smears, breast and cervical cancer screenings, and sexually transmitted disease screenings and treatments. Absolutely no Title X funding is applied to abortions. Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley performed over 22,350 STI screenings,
7,142 pap smears and 7, 758 Breast Exams.
“This policy of attempting to undermine Planned Parenthood, the organization in the United States that does more than any other to encourage the use of contraception for those wanting to avoid pregnancy, certainly guarantees an increase in the number of unintended pregnancies. It is difficult to understand why people who say they are opposed to abortion would do so much to undermine the family planning and contraception that helps prevent the need for it,” said Cecile Richards, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, in a statement released today.
Every year, Planned Parenthood doctors and nurses carry out nearly one million lifesaving screenings for cervical cancer and 830,000 breast exams, and its health centers also provide contraception to nearly 2.5 million patients and nearly four million tests and treatments for sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.
Rep. Pence’s amendment would specifically prohibit Planned Parenthood from receiving any federal funds, including Medicaid, to provide these very kinds of screenings, and birth control.
Planned Parenthood is also an essential health care provider. For six in 10 women who receive medical care from doctors and nurses at family planning health centers like those run by Planned Parenthood, these centers are their main source of health care.
Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley will be calling on the United States Senate to defeat any bill that targets women’s health care and the patients served by Planned Parenthood.