Blog Post

Financial Concerns Force New Spate of Planned Parenthood Closures

48399903_sCommentary by Susan Brinkmann, OCDS

Several more Planned Parenthood clinics will be closing across the country as the organization responds to cuts in state-funding and the impact of ObamaCare.

The Bismarck Tribune is announcing the closure of the only Planned Parenthood in the state of Wyoming due to financial reasons. The clinic will close this summer after more than 40 years in operation.

"This is a challenging decision," said Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains official Adrienne Mansanares to the Associated Press.

The clinic served about 500 patients a year, most of whom will be referred to three local providers in the area. All three of these providers welcome walk-ins and accept Medicaid.

Wyoming will now join North Dakota as the only two Planned Parenthood-free states in the country.

Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains is also planning on closing half of its clinics in northern New Mexico as part of a larger consolidation aimed at keeping the organization solvent in the state due to pending proposals in the state legislature which could pose financial pressure.

The closures are expected to take place in September and will leave the state with three clinics – two in Albuquerque and one in Santa Fe.

Patients who frequented the clinics slated to be closed will be referred to other clinics in the area.

A third of the clinics in the state of Iowa are scheduled to be closed due to a new state law passed by Gov. Terry Branstad (R), which will redirect funds only to clinics that do not provide abortions. These funding cuts are forcing Planned Parenthood to cut the number of its clinics in the state from 12 to eight.

An estimated 14,676 patients will be impacted by the closure, many of whom will be referred to local clinics.

Of course, Planned Parenthood is applying the usual spin to the story, warning that "there will be women who fall through the cracks and lose access to health care because of this dangerous legislation."

However, Maggie DeWitte, director of Iowans for Life, says that’s not true.

planned parenthood rocky mountains logo“There are many quality community health centers in Iowa that provide comprehensive health care to women and families across the state, “DeWitte said in a statement. “And they do so without taking the life of precious human beings.”

Six clinics are also closing in Colorado due to the financial impact of the Affordable Care Act on the way Planned Parenthood does business.

According to Whitney Phillips, spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, a lot of their patients in need of pap smears would typically pay out of pocket.

However, “Under the ACA, a lot of patients were given the opportunity to be on Medicaid,” she explained. “Again, that’s wonderful, but it meant that rather than bill them directly, we had to bill Medicaid. And Medicaid reimburses at a very low rate.”

As a result, this changed the way Planned Parenthood does business and the way the organization gets reimbursements from insurance companies.

However, finances are not the only reason why Planned Parenthood clinics are shutting down. Another reason, which is barely mentioned by the mainstream media, is that they’re losing customers to other healthcare providers.

Adrienne Mansanares, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains Chief Experience Officer, told that in Wyoming, the closing of the facility also had to do with losing so many patients to other providers.

“Planned Parenthood is plainly admitting that their patients are going to other federally-funded health centers,” writes Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America. “It’s likely because these Federally Qualified Health Centers [FQHCs] are in convenient locations, many of which serve low-income populations, and provide a much wider range of comprehensive healthcare than Planned Parenthood.”

In fact, FQHCs outnumber Planned Parenthood clinics by at least 20-to-1. They served almost 23 million people in 2014 versus Planned Parenthood who served just under three million during the same year. In most cases, alternative women’s health options are, on average, less than five miles away from the nearest Planned Parenthood.

Apparently, women are finding their own way to other providers whose main business plan doesn’t center around abortion while providing too few other services to women. Why not go to a clinic where you can get a pap smear and a mammogram plus checkups for the kids while you’re there?

The bottom line is that Planned Parenthood’s business model is simply too narrow for today’s busy woman.

“Planned Parenthood’s enterprise is crumbling, even while they are still raking in over half a billion dollars a year from taxpayers,” said Susan B. Anthony List president Marjorie Dannenfelser.

“Their abortion-centered business model isn’t just morally wrong, it’s a failure. “In a market where there are so many better options, women don’t need to get their health care from Planned Parenthood.”

Defunding Planned Parenthood can’t come soon enough.

Women of Grace® is all about providing women with the information they need to live out their call as daughters of God in today’s world - and at just such a time as this. If you know anyone who is need of low-cost reproductive or any other kind of healthcare, have them visit this website to find the closest FQHC in their area.

© All Rights Reserved, Living His Life Abundantly®/Women of Grace®