Texas testing Trump administration over abortion providers
- Author: Santos West May 18, 2017,
May 18, 2017, 16:28
But Texas is the first state to seek a waiver with the Trump administration, and Nash said other states could follow.
Under federal law, states are required to give Medicaid beneficiaries their choice of "any willing provider", leaving Obama administration health officials to reject Texas from receiving Medicaid funds for their Planned Parenthood ban.
The stakes potentially extend far beyond Texas.
Planned Parenthood has become more of a hot-button issue than ever under Donald Trump, who as a candidate promised to defund it, despite knowing that it helps "millions and millions" of American women. None of these women are getting abortions paid for by the program as that's prohibited by federal law. So if Planned Parenthood were defunded and patients couldn't access care, it's easy to imagine how widespread the impact would be on people who depend on the organization for care.
Carrie Williams, a spokeswoman for Texas' health agency, said Monday they're "looking at what opportunities" may exist under a new administration. In states like Missouri and South Dakota, Planned Parenthood is the only remaining abortion provider in the entire state. Healthy Texas Women has only served approximately 200,000 women as of March.
In Texas' application to regain Medicaid funding for its program, state officials write that Texas has one of the country's highest teen birth rates and the highest total birthrate, with more than half of births in the state funded by Medicaid. It is called Healthy Texas Women and it connects women with providers that offer cancer screenings, contraception, and treatment for diabetes or high blood pressure.
Prior to the 2016 election, Whedon and Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards had meant to collaborate on a video celebrating the abortion provider's centennial. Still, some experts support the CMS approving the waiver because its unclear if Texas will be able to continue family planning services at all, given the state's budget woes.
Planned Parenthood self-reports that 323,999 abortions were performed at its facilities nationwide for the year ending September 30, 2015. "TMA wants to preserve state capacity to serve women in need".
Texas chose to forgo federal funding so it could exclude Planned Parenthood from the list of providers from which women could choose to get health care.
The short film features women in hard situations needing medical help or advice.
Considering that one out of every five women in the USA has visited a Planned Parenthood at one point in their lives, that's a lot of people (mostly from low-income areas) who'd be missing out on an important service Basically, stripping funding from Planned Parenthood is akin to doing the same thing to Medicaid - although on a related note, ThinkProgress recently suggested that shutting down Planned Parenthood would also cause Medicaid spending to rise astronomically, because more unwanted pregnancies will lead to a bigger financial burden on our current system. Adding that limitation could spark an increase in unplanned pregnancies or sexually transmitted diseases.