Supporters of Planned Parenthood claim that an end to federal funding of the organization will limit women’s access to family planning services and preventive care.
In reality, Planned Parenthood itself has decreased cancer screenings and other preventive care since 2004, all the while increasing the number of abortions its affiliates perform annually by about 70,000.
Indeed, Planned Parenthood performs about 1 out of every three abortions in the United States, performing 327,653 abortions during its last reporting year alone. And despite some supporters’ statements to the contrary, Planned Parenthood does not and cannot provide mammograms.
Moreover, health care services are already being provided for those who need them without unethical practices or entanglement in abortion. There are roughly 9,000 health clinics across the country that served 21 million people in 2012 alone.
According to new research by the Charlotte Lozier Institute, those clinics serve nearly eight times the number of individuals served by Planned Parenthood every year. These clinics are located in medically underserved rural and urban areas and can provide birth control options, cancer screenings and women’s health exams, not to mention a wide range of primary health services for low-income women, children and men.
Additionally, roughly 2,000 pregnancy centers provide prenatal care, ultrasounds and childbirth classes, among other services to women facing unplanned pregnancies, empowering them with life-affirming options.
Policymakers looking to put limited taxpayer funds to more efficient and effective use should redirect those dollars to centers and clinics that can provide more comprehensive care for women. All women—but especially those facing difficult circumstances—deserve better care for their health and more options than the cold doors of an abortion facility.
No society that is truly committed to protecting basic human rights can continue funding an industry that harms women, takes the lives of the most vulnerable children and cheapens our respect for life—especially when its leader allegedly harvests and sells tiny organs for profit.
This article has been modified to clarify that Planned Parenthood has increased its number of annual abortions by 70,000 since 2004, not that every year since 2004 it has increased the number of abortions by 70,000.