The Obama Administration recently spoke up in the midst of the drama surrounding Planned Parenthood. Rumors have been swirling and increasing in intensity as well as gruesome content over the past several months, and now many Republican-led states have begun to implement ways to stop the funding of the clinics women rely upon for safe abortions.
Alabama and Louisiana are the most recent states to move to block Medicaid funds toward Planned Parenthood, which will ultimately leave the organization’s establishments in those states to wither away. However, destorying Planned Parenthood will also eradicate womens’ access to abortions, which is illegal and now has the Obama Administration speaking out.
A letter was sent by the Obama Administration to the Department of Health and Human Services which stated it is illegal to withhold funding to medical institutions based upon people’s personal convictions and that doing so will result in grave consequences. An excerpt of the letter reads:
“The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a unit of HHS, has notified Alabama and Louisiana, which have taken action to terminate their Medicaid provider agreements with Planned Parenthood, that they may be in conflict with federal law, HHS said. The agency said that, by restricting providers, women could lose access to critical preventive care, such as cancer screenings.
HHS said it provided both states with guidance it released in a June 2011 memo, which says states aren’t permitted to exclude providers from Medicaid solely on the basis of the range of medical services they provide. The memo says states may exclude providers under certain circumstances, such as when providers commit fraud or certain criminal acts.”
A federal hearing schedule will be held if states continue to defund Planned Parenthood, though anti-abortion radicalists don’t seem to be slowing down any time soon. What this means for them, the HHS and the future of such clinics remains to be seen.