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February 22, 2019 (Des Moines, IA) – Today, the Trump-Pence administration released the final gag rule on Title X funding, the nation’s family planning program that helps cover the cost of birth control and preventive care for people with low incomes. This rule bans any health care provider that refers patients for safe, legal abortion from receiving Title X funds.

By issuing this dangerous rule, President Trump will block millions of Americans from the high-quality, affordable health care they seek at Planned Parenthood health centers. This includes nearly 14,000 Iowans who rely on Title X funding to receive care at six Planned Parenthood health centers across the state: Ames, Council Bluffs, Des Moines, Iowa City, and Urbandale.

This announcement comes after Planned Parenthood in Iowa already lost significant funding in 2017, when the State Legislature dismantled the Iowa Family Planning Network Medicaid waiver. 

This change prohibited patients from receiving care at Planned Parenthood health centers under the state’s replacement Family Planning Program (FPP), and has created a crisis for Iowans in need of birth control and other family planning. Without Planned Parenthood, the FPP is providing just 27% of the health care that Iowans were receiving under the former Medicaid waiver, with a 51% decline in the number of people who are enrolled in the program, according to the Iowa Department of Human Services.

Statement from Erin Davison-Rippey, Planned Parenthood State Executive Director – Iowa: 

"Whether the President and Vice President like it or not, Planned Parenthood is the leading provider of family planning services in our state. Women know us, women trust us, and there is no replacement for the expert care we provide. It is unconscionable that the Trump-Pence administration is telling nearly 14,000 Iowa patients that they can’t get health care at their chosen health center.

“In Iowa, we already know firsthand what happens when Planned Parenthood patients are cut off from family planning funding: services are reduced, rates of sexually transmitted infections skyrocket, and people go without basic health care. Other providers simply cannot and do not fill the gap when Planned Parenthood is barred from serving patients.

“Regardless of these egregious attacks on our patients, Planned Parenthood isn’t going anywhere.  Our doors remain open and we will work with each patient to ensure they receive the care they need.”

Statement from Sarah Stoesz, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood North Central States:

“I have never seen a policy so egregious and insidious. Low-income women should not be denied the care they need to be healthy and plan their pregnancies.  And politicians should not be telling people where they can and cannot get their health care.

“Planned Parenthood is a crucial part of our public health system and this rule tries to cut off low-income women from receiving high-quality, lifesaving health care services at our clinics across the state and the country.  We need the American public to appreciate how disturbing this gag rule is and the far-reaching impact on the people of our state and our nation.

“It’s baffling that our President and Vice President want to do something that leads to more unintended pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases and cancer. We will do everything in our power to fight this rule for one simple reason: it is a direct attack on the health of our state and our country.” 

Title X Background
Title X (ten), passed by Congress in 1970, is the only federal grant program dedicated to funding comprehensive family planning services for Americans with low incomes. Title X funds serve people who can’t afford usual doctor’s appointments. For many people these health centers are their only source of health care.
Title X provides a range of essential preventive health services including contraception, STD testing and treatment, HIV testing, and breast and cervical cancer screenings. No Title X funds have ever been used for abortion services. Since the beginning of Title X, health centers that provide abortions, like Planned Parenthood, were able to get funding but were prohibited from using those funds to subsidize or pay for abortions. 
In Iowa, Planned Parenthood uses Title X funds to care for patients at health centers in Ames, Council Bluffs, Des Moines, Iowa City, and Urbandale.

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Planned Parenthood North Central States and its subsidiary organizations provide, promote and protect reproductive and sexual health through high quality care, education and advocacy. A member of America’s most trusted reproductive health care provider, our affiliate is proud to support and operate 29 health centers across our five-state region (Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota).  Each year, we provide health care to nearly 115,000 people and health education to more than 99,000 people in our region.