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WASHINGTON, DC — Today, by a vote of 53-46, women’s health champions in the U.S. Senate took a strong stand for protecting millions of women’s access to health care, rejecting a misleading and misguided effort to block patients who rely on publicly funded health care programs from seeking care at Planned Parenthood’s nonprofit health centers. Today's vote is in line with the findings of a poll released last week by Hart Research Associates, and sends a clear message to anti-abortion extremists — that America stands with Planned Parenthood.

The bill would have blocked millions of women, men and young people across the country from receiving preventive care — including cancer screenings and birth control — at Planned Parenthood health centers. The vote comes despite a relentless, coordinated campaign by members of Congress and anti-abortion extremists to attack Planned Parenthood and the important health care services it provides, by any means necessary — including likely violations of state and federal law.

 Planned Parenthood is, and remains, the nation’s most trusted reproductive health care provider, serving 2.7 million people each year.

Statement from Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America:

“Tonight, the Senate sent a clear message: blocking millions of women, men and young people from seeking care at a Planned Parenthood health center is a political non-starter.

“Not only was this bill cruel, it was nonsensical. Planned Parenthood is the nation’s most trusted reproductive health care provider. The vast majority of federal funding Planned Parenthood’s nonprofit health centers receive is reimbursement for serving patients enrolled in Medicaid — millions of patient visits a year for basic, preventive services like birth control and lifesaving cancer screenings. Medical experts across the country called this bill — and the idea that millions of patients could be 'absorbed' by existing providers — 'ludicrous.' The ONLY purpose this bill served was to cut women, and men, off from the reproductive health care they now rely on.

“These past few weeks have shown us that anti-abortion extremists will stop at nothing to block women’s access to basic reproductive health care. Members of Congress are again insisting that women’s health care isn’t 'legitimate' and anti-abortion rhetoric has crossed into the ridiculous — with presidential candidates threatening to send in federal troops to prevent women from accessing safe and legal abortion.

“Yet this manufactured scandal has gone nowhere — the Senate has voted, the president has threatened a veto, and these tapes, as well as the extremists behind them, have lost credibility. While some extreme Republicans may continue to insist on shutting down the government in order to deny health care, including birth control, to millions of women, that is a fight the American people have zero appetite for and a fight these extremists will not win.

“We’re grateful that the Senate stood up for women across the country and rejected this bill. This fight may not be over, but we’re ready for it, just like we were in 2011, and in 2009, and in 2007. It’s time the far right came to terms with political reality: attacks on women’s health are deeply unpopular, and put millions of lives at risk. The American people stand with Planned Parenthood. We know what happens when the out-of-touch extremists in Congress try to push their anti-woman agenda above everything else -- the American people reject them.”

Planned Parenthood provides a wide range of preventive health care services, and serves a total of 2.7 million patients per year. More than 90 percent of the care Planned Parenthood provides is preventive, including lifesaving cancer screenings, birth control, and testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Planned Parenthood has been a trusted health care provider for nearly 100 years.

In 2013, Planned Parenthood served 2.7 million women, men, and young people.

  • 1.5 million of those patients received services through Title X — the nation’s family planning program.
  • At least 78 percent of Planned Parenthood’s health care patients live with incomes of 150 percent of the federal poverty level or less (the equivalent of $36,375 a year for a family of four in 2015).
  • Approximately 60 percent of the patients Planned Parenthood serves each year benefit from public health coverage programs such as the nation’s family planning program and Medicaid.
  • In addition, Planned Parenthood affiliates reached 1.5 million young people and families through sex education and outreach.
  • More than half of Planned Parenthood's health centers are in rural or medically underserved areas.

In 2013, patients came into Planned Parenthood health centers 4.6 million times for services.  

  • 2.2 million, or 52 percent of all patient visits, were with patients enrolled in Medicaid.

In 2013, Planned Parenthood provided 10.6 million services.

  • Nearly 400,000 Pap tests
  • Nearly 500,000 breast exams
  • Nearly 4.5 million STI tests and treatments, including HIV tests

In 2013, Planned Parenthood affiliates received a total of $528.4 million in government reimbursements and grants — about 75 percent of which was reimbursement for serving patients enrolled in Medicaid.

  • Planned Parenthood affiliates are nonprofit health care providers that receive reimbursements for providing preventive health care services like cancer screenings and birth control to low-income patients, just like other health care providers receive. Planned Parenthood’s national office and affiliates also receive funding from private sources, including foundations and individual supporters, which are essential because government funds do not fully cover the cost of care.
  • All government funds that Planned Parenthood affiliates receive are restricted for specific purposes. Federal funds are prohibited from covering abortion — except in the dire circumstances of rape, incest, or when the life of the woman is in jeopardy. Planned Parenthood fully complies with this and all government restrictions.

Approximately 1 in 5 women has relied on a Planned Parenthood health center for care in her lifetime.


Planned Parenthood is the nation's leading provider and advocate of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation's largest provider of sex education. With approximately 700 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.


Planned Parenthood Federation of America


Planned Parenthood Federation of America 
media office: 212-261-4433 
[email protected]


August 03, 2015