Back in 2015, Texas announced that it would officially terminate the Medicaid contracts for all Planned Parenthood clinics in the state. Sadly, this past Tuesday, state health officials in Texas made the decision official, serving a legal notice to officially defund it within 30 days.
The Texas Tribune reports that Planned Parenthood currently receives $3.1 million in funding, which goes to family planning and women’s health services to the poor. Clearly, this means that funding will be cut off in 30 days’ time, unless Planned Parenthood appeals in 15 days–which will result in many women not having proper medical treatment–like cancer screenings, birth control and other forms of preventive care.
As the Tribune reports, PP will probably have to turn to the courts, bypassing what an administrative hearing with the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.
So why did all of this happen? Texas moved to defund Planned Parenthood’s Medicaid contracts as a result of the controversy surrounding the videos released last year by the anti-abortion organization, the Center for Medical Progress. In case you forgot, the videos claimed to show various Planned Parenthood employees selling fetal tissue, a practice that is illegal (and never happened).
Yvonne Gutierrez, executive director of Planned Parenthood Texas Votes said in a statement following the notice:
“Planned Parenthood continues to serve Medicaid patients and will seek a preliminary injunction in an ongoing lawsuit filed in November 2015, following the state’s original threats to take action against Planned Parenthood’s patients.”
I sincerely hope they do, for the sake of the health of so many Texan women who will be negatively affected by this decision. You can make a donation to specific Planned Parenthood locations here.