Trump administration to ban abortion referrals by taxpayer-funded clinics

Trump administration to ban abortion referrals by taxpayer-funded clinics

Trump administration to ban abortion referrals by taxpayer-funded clinics

The Trump administration issued a final rule on Friday that could effectively cut off tens of millions of federal family planning dollars to Planned Parenthood and steer some of that funding towards anti-abortion, faith-based care providers....

The new rule prevents federal funding from going to family planning centers that refer or perform abortions while providing Title X services such as birth control, mammograms and cancer screenings. It also eliminates a "requirement that Title X providers offer abortion counseling and referral".

"This rule intentionally strikes at the heart of the patient-provider relationship, inserting political ideology into a family planning visit, which will frustrate and ultimately discourage patients from seeking the health care they need", said Clare Coleman, president and CEO of the National Family Planning & Reproductive Health Association.

The new rule specifically prohibits "referral for abortion as a method of family planning", but does not bar "nondirective counseling on abortion".

The rule is set to take effect in 60 days.

Planned Parenthood and other groups representing the clinics say the new requirements for physical separation of facilities would be costly and all but impossible to fulfill.

A series of rule changes related to how the federal government distributes money allocated for the family planning grant program known as Title X could make a significant dent in funding for Planned Parenthood. "Of the half a billion dollars or so, around 25 percent was Title X funding, the rest was Medicaid reimbursements".

The Trump administration announced on February 22 that it will ban tax-payer funded facilities from promoting or performing abortions. She noted that women will "benefit from better regulatory oversight, a wider range of services, and more life-affirming options".

"Abortion is neither health care nor family planning which is why the Title X program has no business funding it", March for Life president Jeanne Mancini echoed in a statement. Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, said that the "finalized "protect life rule" draws a bright line between abortion and family planning programs".

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, however, applauded the administration, saying in a statement Friday night, "Since President Trump took office, we have made great strides toward defending the sanctity of life". It never went into effect as written, although the Supreme Court ruled it was an appropriate use of executive power.

Wen insisted that abortion is "standard medical health care".

"It's 2019, yet the Trump Administration is still trying to roll back women's rights", California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said following the ruling. "The updated rule seeks to ensure a holistic and health-centered approach, safeguarding the short- and long-term family planning needs of more women, men, and adolescents in need of services".

That may include refusing Title X funding altogether and looking for other funding alternatives, she said, "if it becomes too onerous to operate under that system and we don't feel like we would be giving our patients good care".

Wen has said the group could not accept funds under the rule because it would compromise its ethical obligations to patients. They've also described it as an indirect way to defund Planned Parenthood, which has always been a target of anti-abortion activists as the nation's largest provider of reproductive care services, including abortions. "These new rules are unsafe and unnecessary, and will prevent millions of Americans from obtaining the care they need and deserve".

Lawmakers also reacted to the new pro-life Title X rule. "The women of this country - and all people who rely on Title X providers - deserve a president who respects them".

Friday's announcement was the latest move by President Donald Trump to restrict women's reproductive rights.

One of the 2020 presidential hopefuls, Sen. All it means is that the providers who want Title X money can't provide abortion services.

To continue receiving taxpayer subsidies under the program, health clinics will have to comply with the new rule.

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