The rule made it clear that it is against the law for state politicians to block people from accessing care at a health center because the organization also provides safe, legal abortion.
Politicians in the House and Senate simultaneously introduced legislation to overturn a rule that protects health care for more than 4 million people who rely on Title X, the nation’s family planning program.
The rule makes it clear that it is against the law for state politicians to block people from accessing care at a health center because the organization also provides safe, legal abortion – including care at Planned Parenthood and other reproductive health care providers. The Obama Administration’s rule rule garnered widespread support in the call for public comment, with 91% of the roughly 145,000 responses in favor of the rule. Every poll shows that American people overwhelmingly support Planned Parenthood and strongly oppose these attacks.
Planned Parenthood health centers care for approximately 1.5 million patients through Title X – roughly one third of the more than 4 million people served by the program. For many patients across the country, Planned Parenthood health centers are the only places they can turn to for reproductive health care. More than half of Planned Parenthood's health centers are in rural and underserved communities.
This comes as extremists like Vice President Mike Pence and Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) have threatened to “defund” Planned Parenthood at the federal level and cut off health care for millions.
It is already illegal to bar Planned Parenthood patients from accessing care through Title X and other government programs, as courts in Florida and Ohio found just this past summer. To date, every court to consider the issue on the merits has ruled that state politicians cannot block access to care at Planned Parenthood through Title X.
Extremists in Congress are trying to make it easier for state politicians to block women from getting birth control and other preventive care. Let’s be crystal clear it is already illegal to block people from care at Planned Parenthood and other trusted providers, as court after court has found, even before this rule.
The past few weeks have made it clear that the American people will not stand for this kind of attack. For many of our patients, not being able to get care at a Planned Parenthood health center means that they don’t get care.
This is a dangerous plan, and Planned Parenthood’s millions of supporters will not take these attacks lying down. When Congress goes home in a few weeks, you had better believe there will be people in pink hats ready to meet them at every town hall, grocery store, and public appearance.— Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America
Title X, the nation’s family planning program, is meant to ensure that every person, regardless of where they live, how much money they make, or whether or not they have health insurance, has access to basic, preventive reproductive health care.
The rule ensures those most in need – those who have very low incomes or lack health insurance – still have access to lifesaving care, such as cancer screenings, birth control, STI testing and treatment, and well-woman exams.
People with low incomes and communities of color are two groups that have historically faced systemic barriers in accessing quality health care, are less likely to have health insurance, and who benefit most from these protections.
In 2014,15% of Planned Parenthood patients were Black, more than 360,000 people, and 23% of Planned Parenthood patients were Latinos, more than 575,000 people. 75% of Planned Parenthood patients have incomes at or below 150% of the federal poverty level (FPL). The idea that other providers could absorb Planned Parenthood’s patients has been resoundingly dismissed by experts – in fact the executive director of the American Public Health Association called the idea “ludicrous.”