The following is a letter to the Akron Beacon Journal, written by Denise Leipold, executive director of Right to Life of Northeast Ohio. It appeared in this morning's Voice of the People section. Read the original letter here.
The Sept. 30 Beacon Journal editorial, “Proven lifeline for health care,” incorrectly implies that defunding Planned Parenthood would risk the health care of the disadvantaged. There are 13,540 clinics in the United States providing free or low-cost comprehensive health care. Planned Parenthood has just 665 locations.
In Ohio, there are 643 alternatives to Planned Parenthood’s 27 locations.
At least 50 Community Action agencies provide medical services including family planning services, in addition to other services to low-income families.
Fifty-five free clinics in 31 counties provide access to care for many who find themselves temporarily unemployed or unable to obtain employer-based health insurance. View the list at ohiofreeclinics.org.
Ohio has 125 county and city local health departments.
More than 200 community health center locations in Ohio served more than 500,000 Ohioans in 2011: that is five times the number of women Planned Parenthood claims to serve in Ohio. Ohio’s 213 statewide hospitals spent $989 million in free charity care in 2011 (the latest available statistics).
In the Akron-Canton area alone, not including the hospitals, there are 15 alternatives to Planned Parenthood’s three locations. All of them provide prenatal care. None of Ohio’s Planned Parenthood locations does.
The editorial also stated that only three Planned Parenthood locations in Ohio do abortions. That is not correct. Only three of them do surgical abortions. Most of the others do medication abortions.
The reference to Carly Fiorina lying about the Planned Parenthood videos and seeing a fully formed and live fetus after an abortion is also wrong. The Center for Medical Progress released the full uncut version of the abortion of the fetus in question. It is gruesome and horrible and can be viewed at https://youtu.be/6X8_WEFq15Q.
The claim that Planned Parenthood reduces abortions through contraceptive services is also wrong. In almost every major worldwide study on contraceptive use in teenagers, results show that promoting contraception has led to increased casual sex, increased failure or use of contraceptives, increased pregnancies, increased abortions and a huge increase in sexually transmitted diseases.
Whether you are pro-choice or pro-life, it should disturb you that an organization that aborts children and sells their body parts for profit receives any of our tax dollars at all, regardless of what they use the money for. The only one that would lose from the defunding is Planned Parenthood itself.