Thursday, September 3, 2015

Planned Parenthood Supporters Rally to Oppose Funding Cuts

Andrea Sears, Public News Service

A state investigation found Planned Parenthood in Pennsylvania does not donate, buy or sell fetal tissue. Credit: Planned Parenthood.
A state investigation found Planned Parenthood in Pennsylvania does not donate, buy or sell fetal tissue. Credit: Planned Parenthood.
YORK, Pa. – As abortion opponents threaten federal and state funding cuts, supporters of Planned Parenthood rallied at the organization's York Medical Center Thursday morning.

The release of a video by an anti-abortion group, which allegedly shows Planned Parenthood officials at an unnamed location negotiating prices for aborted fetal tissue, has fueled the current defunding effort. But Sari Stevens, executive director of Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania Advocates, says that does not happen in the Keystone State.

"The Secretary of Health performed an investigation and found absolutely no evidence of wrongdoing or any evidence of a fetal sale or tissue-donation program," she says.

Planned Parenthood is not directly funded by the state, but receives fees for health services based on patient income. A bill proposed by State Representative Paul Schemel would divert funds by prioritizing payments to other care providers.

According to Stevens, Pennsylvania has fewer OB/GYN doctors per capita than any other state, making its services critical. Fees collected by Planned Parenthood cover a broad range of reproductive health issues.

"Things like reimbursements for pap smears, STD testing and treatment, cervical cancer screening, birth control and other preventive measures," she says.

According to Planned Parenthood, only three percent of the services it provides in Pennsylvania are abortion-related.

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