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Planned Parenthood Not Needed for Women’s Health, Groups Say

As Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards prepares to defend her organization before a U.S. House committee this morning, a coalition of pro-life groups are promoting a campaign and a website to show that Planned Parenthood is not needed to provide for women’s health.

The coalition, led by Alliance Defending Freedom, argues that for every Planned Parenthood clinic there are 20 federally funded women’s health clinics almost always performing more medical and health services than Planned Parenthood clinics.

The group, including Concerned Women for America, Family Research Council, Americans United for Life, Students for Life, Radiance Foundation, Charlotte Lozier Institute and Life Issues Institute, launched GetYourCare.org with an interactive map that shows exactly where each of the 13,540 federally funded health centers are located. The map is a sea of yellow dots that appear within miles of each other from coast to coast, though less numerous in the less populated mountain states. On the other hand, Planned Parenthood has only 665 clinics.

Besides defunding Planned Parenthood, the main theme of a press conference this morning was the lack of medical and health services provided by Planned Parenthood.

Planned Parenthood clinics provide a relatively small number of health services including birth control, manual breast exams, urinary tract inspections, STD testing, PAP testing and pelvic exams, while federally qualified health centers provide these and eleven more services including mammograms, emergency care, diabetes and glaucoma screenings, well-child services, radiological services, cardiovascular blood tests, bone mass measurements and more.

Jeanneane Maxon of American United for Life said in recent years Planned Parenthood is focusing more on its core profit center, abortion.

Since 2006, during a time when overall abortions are dropping in America, Planned Parenthood’s abortion business has been growing. Cancer screening and prevention screenings have dropped from roughly 2 million to 985,000 while abortions have increased from 289,750 to 327,000.  “Since 2004, Planned Parenthood has increased from performing one in every five abortions to now performing one in every three,” she said.

One of the central defenses of Planned Parenthood is that the group performs breast exams that save women’s lives from cancer. However, since 2004, “Planned Parenthood has cut its cancer screening and prevention services by more than 50 percent,” says AUL’s Maxon.

ADF’s Alison Howard said through a Freedom of Information request her organization discovered that not a single Planned Parenthood clinic in the country is licensed to do mammograms. She said, “Why does a group that makes a profit of $127 million a year not buy a single mammogram machine?”

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