What These Budgets Will Do To Women’s Health

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Mount Pleasant/Sturtevant Patch will eventually be publishing some of the following story.  I will link to the article once it is published. It has to be majorly edited for space and to make it more local. However, below is the result of A LOT of research and several days of writing. I think it contains information that all Americans and voters – especially women – should know. Please share…

Wisconsin legislators are not the only lawmakers crunching the numbers these days. With all the hoopla in Madison, our Federal Budget may be a little over looked by the some of the citizens here in the Badger State. There is one proposal in Washington,as well as in Wisconsin, which is being volleyed back and forth. Woman’s reproductive health has long been a center of discussion in the political realm and still is. In fact, according to Fox News on February 26, 2011:

A Georgia state representative [Rep. Bobby Franklin, a Republican] has reintroduced an anti-abortion bill that would make miscarriages a felony if the mother cannot prove there was no “human involvement.” The legislation from Rep. Bobby Franklin, a Republican, would make all abortions, described as “prenatal murder”… Anyone convicted would face the death penalty or life behind bars.”

The internal female plumbing has been and still is a major topic of discussion for the past 30+ years. Throughout those 30-some years there has been a commitment to woman’s health with the assistance of Planned Parenthood regardless of which party held office. It is still no surprise that mere weeks ago The U.S. House of Representatives approved an amendment to the proposed federal budget which would completely eliminate all federal funding for Planned Parenthood. It is also not surprising that Governor Walker’s budget would do the same on a state level.

In the last election, right winged republicans and tea party candidates were elected into office all over the country. Tea party candidates said repeatedly that their only concerns were fiscal responsibility and budget balancing. They wanted less government, less regulation. Throughout their campaign they claimed not to take sides on social issues as a party. But now that they are in office, it is clear that there is a social (perhaps, religious) agenda. And while they want less government in our lives, they still want them in our bodies. They want less regulation, but they want to regulate our reproductive rights.

On Scott Walker’s website you can find these statements:

I am 100% pro-life and believe in protecting life from conception to natural death. As governor, I will protect the sanctity of all human life.

I am proud to be endorsed by Wisconsin Right to Life, which noted that my election “would greatly contribute to building a culture of life where the most vulnerable members of the human family are welcomed and protected.”

I have also been endorsed by Pro-Life Wisconsin which said that a Walker Administration “will have far-reaching, positive effects for Wisconsin citizens who value the dignity of all innocent human life.”

So there is no surprise where he would stand on the issue. However, it goes beyond that. Not only does Walker want to ban abortions for victims of rape and incest, he has also placed into the budget a repeal of Contraception Equality (an anti discrimination law) enacted by Governor Doyle which mandates insurance companies to cover birth control as they would any other medication. This means that uninsured women in Wisconsin will not only lose the benefit of Planned Parenthood services, but insured women would have to pay extraordinary prices in order to prevent unwanted pregnancies.

In 2001, Walker also introduced a bill before becoming governor which would have made it legal for pharmacists to refuse the filling of birth control. That bill was vetoed.

In Wisconsin, Planned Parenthood services more than 73,000 patients a year. And In Racine, 3,200.

Approximately 1/3 of Planned Parenthood’s budget is from federal funding. Even though not one federal or state dollar is applied towards abortion services or locations, those who support this measure feel this is a valid strike against abortion rights.

From The Boston Herald on March 20, 2011, one man explains his view,

Right now, unborn children have no voice in this country,” said Eric Anthony, 62, of Brighton, who held a sign calling abortion a “daily 9/11.” “It’s unfair that my tax dollars go to fund abortion.”

Many right to life organizations would have you believe that abortion is on the rise. However, stated directly on the website, Census.gov, abortions have significantly decreased since 1990.

According to NPR’s Talk of the Nation on March 7, 2011, only 3% of Planned Parenthood services are abortion related. And none of that 3% is financed with federal or state funding or tax dollars.

Recently, right to life organizations have been preparing for a new battle. Their directive is the criminalization of all birth control methods. They feel that simply using any form of birth control is no different than having an abortion. These are the very groups which Walker supports and receives endorsements. Can we see where this is going.

Even though it is proven that Planned Parenthood helps save money in the long run, even though these items are being cut from the budget…this is indeed not a financial matter for the lawmakers.

Florida Representative cliff Stearns has introduced a bill which would provide federal funding for anti-abortion medical facilities. This would give up to 5 million to clinics for ultrasound equipment to be used to persuade women from electing to terminate their pregnancies. That 5 million? That would be for 2012 – alone. So tell me, how is this about saving money?

In a recent Wall Street Journal column, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services estimated that Medicaid Family Planning programs (IE. Planned Parenthood) saved tax payers over $140 million dollars in 2008. It was also estimated that these programs prevented over 11, 000 unplanned pregnancies. Of those 11,000 – some were bound to have been terminated. Is that not what they are trying to avoid?

This simply does not make fiscal sense,” explains Amanda Harrington from Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin. “Without Planned Parenthood, teen pregnancies are said to go up by a third.”

As you can see, woman’s health means little to Scott Walker and his fellow legislative conservatives. And I wish we were only talking about an STD here and there – which can be deadly in their own right – but this is a matter of life and death for many, many women.

While in her 20s, former Sturtevant resident, Rebecca Cassens utilized the services of Planned Parenthood. She did not have insurance and Planned Parenthood was her only means of any and all medical care. From 1996-2009 she depended on this organization in a very serious way – to save her life.

In 1998, Rebecca received news that her latest pap smear was abnormal. She ended up having a procedure, called a cone biopsy, to avoid the spreading of cervical cancer cells. She was diagnosed with severe dysplagia which, had gone undiagnosed, would have caused cervical cancer. Since her diagnosis and treatment, her subsequent paps have been clear and she is now living a healthy life.

I absolutely believe that I received life-saving care from Planned Parenthood,” Rebecca insists, “Without access to their low cost care, I would not have had the early diagnosis which saved my life.”

Harrington from Planned Parenthood says that these stories are unbelievably common. “I have had so many women tell me stories of how Planned Parenthood saved their lives with a pap smear they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to obtain.”

A pap smear is a recommended yearly test which is the only procedure used in detecting Cervical Cancer. From the information found on Cancer.org, over 55 million paps are performed in the U.S. each year. Of those, 3.5 million (or 6%) are abnormal and will require medical intervention. In 2009, Planned Parenthood preformed nearly 51,000 follow up procedures due to abnormal pap results preventing the growth of cancer cells, which in some cases can spread very rapidly.

Also from Cancer.org, 1 in 147 women will be diagnosed with Cervical Cancer at some time in their life. In 2010, an estimated 12,200 women were diagnosed with this deadly disease and it cost over 4000 women their lives. The death rate in 2010 for Cervical Cancer is 2.4 in every 100,000 women. And in African American women, 4.4 in 100,000 – almost double. If detected early with a pap smear, stage one cervical cancer has a 5 year survival rate of over 91%. Wow. What a difference a swab can make.

It is clear that pap smears save lives. It is also clear that many women depend upon Planned Parenthood for these services. If these services do not continue to exist, many women could possibly lose their lives.

Harrington states that 33,000 women would lose their basic medical care if Planned Parenthood would cease to exist.

As a previous Wisconsin Planned Parenthood patient, Justine Curry of San Diego, states, “If it weren’t for Planned Parenthood I would NOT have had such steady gynecological care at a price I could afford throughout college and post college before I got my own insurance.” She continues, “Also, because Planned Parenthood was available to me at an early age to start the “habit” of yearly gynecological exams, I continue to make it a priority in my healthcare.”

Planed Parenthood serves many uninsured and under-insured patients as a means for much, if not all, of their routine medical screening. Planned Parenthood is not just a vending stop for condoms and pregnancy tests.
Planned Parenthood monitors and test for diabetes, high blood pressure, anemia and many different cancer screenings including mammograms. They provide young moms to be with prenatal care. And in 2009 (from the most recent Planned Parenthood Fact Sheet), there were 904,820 pap smears preformed.

I am no longer a Planned Parenthood patient but I hope that they continue to exist for my sister and daughter and the thousands of women whom have no other access to medical care,” Rebecca states.

A recent New York City billboard claimed that ‘the most dangerous place for an African American is in the womb.’ Needless to say this billboard, which is near a Planned Parenthood location, has created a hotbed of controversy. Considering the facts above, I have to wonder if it is simply dangerous to have a uterus at all. Simply HAVING a womb targets women for questioning, inadequate healthcare, discrimination and even early death.

Whether or not one agrees with abortion rights is not the issue when it comes to the funding of Planned Parenthood. What is the issue is the necessity of it’s services to women who so desperately need them to survive and maintain a healthy life.

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About Heather Rayne

I am a mom, wife, writer, volunteer, eater of food, lover of animals and avid TV enthusiast. I am opinionated, honest, compassionate and sensitive. I can also be difficult, hard headed and emotional. I consider myself to have a great sense of humor and am very attracted to that in others. I am striving to live an authentic life. I am attempting to learn how to find happiness in the now. I always have hope to be a better person. That being said - I can be vulgar, negative and even a little bitchy at times. I say what I mean and my filter is often dysfunctional. With me, what you see is what you get. I have strong opinions and am quick to speak my mind. This can cause problems from time to time but I do not ever intend to hurt or offend anyone. With that - be warned. I do hope you enjoy my site. Thanks for visiting and have a swell day.

22 responses »

  1. Pingback: Planned Parenthood Piece on Patch « Ramblings of a Neurotic Housewife

  2. David, You say: “Planned Parenthood does nothing with regard to pap smears, breast health (even though Susan B Komen gives tons for breast cancer research), or any other gynecological issue.”

    Planned Parenthood is a screening house for so many women who need pap smears. They are often the first to detect abnormal paps that lead to cancer.

    More importantly PP is a place to provide information and referral for woman who just need a point of contact on their health.

  3. Pingback: Please Call Your Senators!! Planned Parenthood Could Be Destroyed Today « Ramblings of a Neurotic Housewife

  4. Yeah, uh.. I don’t know where I went now because I was SURE I went to planned parenthood when I was in my late teens and early 20s (when I couldn’t afford to go to a normal hospital) because I was sure I got a PAP and a breast exam.. Where in the world do you get your information from?? Have you actually talked to anyone who has gone to planned parenthood?? They were very good at giving information and actually DID push for abstinence but supplied birth control for those that wanted it, knowing that we live in the REAL world where people actually do have sex even if they are not married. It’s better to have women well informed and have birth control to PREVENT an unwanted pregnancy from happening.

    • Marie, there is direct evidence of people who have worked in Planned Parenthood clinics. I know personally women who were counselors at PP who tell me that there are no such services performed in a Planned Parenthood clinic. Also, there is no oversight or inspection of these places to ensure that they meet minimum standards. Planned Parenthood does make referrals, but they do no services other than providing ‘counselling’, birth control and abortion. They even have sonograms but only use them to determine the age of the baby (it’s a human baby in there) so they can determine how much to charge the patient.
      But you do touch on the real issue here, and that is that people do have sex even when they’re not married. This is what’s known as improper use of tools available. Like using a screwdriver as a can opener or a knife as a screwdriver. The truth is, if you don’t have sex, you use the best form of birth control there is. So let’s inform the woman (and the man) that a woman is not to be viewed as a sex object. Birth control allows women to be seen and used as sex objects because there is little or no consequence to the act. But just as lessening the penalty for committing a crime will automatically increase the incidences of said crime, taking away the consequences of having sex makes it more likely that people will have sex. And while we’re at it, let’s call abortion what it is…it’s failed birth control.

  5. As someone who works in child protective services – I would much rather see a woman abort a fetus (at taxpayers expense) then have them abuse or neglect their child(ren) or allow their boyfriends to. An abortion cost far less than foster care, especially when it comes to shaken babies who require medically needy foster homes. I have seen babies that were perfectly healthy one day only to be blind, brain damaged, paralyzed, tube fed, etc. the next because some parent, who never should have had a child shook them, threw them at a wall or punched them. I would much rather see a woman abort a fetus than leave her baby in a garbage can, a bathroom stall or some other place to die. Unfortunately woman don’t always (or even usually) do the right thing (give them up for adoption) after these children are born. I would much rather see Planned Parenthood provide free/low cost birth control (especially condoms) to teenagers to prevent unplanned pregnancies and STIs. I would much rather see a woman go to Planned Parenthood for annual pap smears than have the state (via Badgercare/T19) pay for cancer treatment. Planned Parenthood provides so much more than abortions – in fact, out local Planned Parenthood doesn’t even provide that service – it provides education, preventative care, free/low cost contraception too.

  6. Why do you want to talk to yourself that way? If killing humans is wrong, then it is always wrong. Go murder someone and find out what happens. Yet if it’s inside of you, then it’s your decision? So, if your 7 year old pisses you off, it’s inside your home, can you do what you want with it? Hell, you can’t even purposely kill your pet legally. But yeah,it’s ok, go ahead and kill your unborn child. Who’s crazy???

  7. You do the same thing. And my underwear is of no concern to you. Planned Parenthood should exist or not based on the private funding it takes in, just like any other business. What’s you’re beef with that? Especially since what the government gives them is “a drop in the bucket”.

    Your support also shows your agreement with Margaret Sanger who thought she knew better than everyone else “Sanger was a proponent of negative eugenics, a social philosophy which claims that human hereditary traits can be improved through social intervention. Sanger’s eugenic policies ran to an exclusionary immigration policy, free access to birth control methods and full family-planning autonomy for the able-minded, and compulsory segregation or sterilization for the profoundly retarded. She expressly denounced euthanasia as a eugenics tool.

    In A Plan for Peace (1932), for example, Sanger proposed a congressional department to:

    Keep the doors of immigration closed to the entrance of certain aliens whose condition is known to be detrimental to the stamina of the race, such as feebleminded, idiots, morons, insane, syphilitic, epileptic, criminal, professional prostitutes, and others in this class barred by the immigration laws of 1924.[2

    And, following:

    Apply a stern and rigid policy of sterilization and segregation to that grade of population whose progeny is already tainted or whose inheritance is such that objectionable traits may be transmitted to offspring.
    From Wikipedia

    For your info, everything on earth has a positive and a negative. Every man, woman and child, and everything created by man. There’s more negative than positive to Planned Parenthood.

  8. Sure, go ahead and delete the truth, honey.

    “Every Planned Parenthood, without exception, tells her she will have to go elsewhere for a mammogram, and many clinics admit that no Planned Parenthood clinics provide this breast cancer screening procedure,” according to the group’s news release.

    “ ‘We don’t provide those services whatsoever,’ admits a staffer at Planned Parenthood of Arizona. Planned Parenthood’s Comprehensive Health Center clinic in Overland Park, KS explains to the caller, ‘We actually don’t have a, um, mammogram machine, at our clinics,’ ” the news release said.

    The new recordings confirm Planned Parenthood’s “corruption,” Live Action’s president, Lila Rose, said in the news release.

    “Planned Parenthood is first and foremost an abortion business, but Planned Parenthood and its allies will say almost anything to try and cover up that fact and preserve its taxpayer funding,” Rose said.

    But a Planned Parenthood spokesman denied that the organization claimed to offer mammograms, saying the transcript of the show clearly shows Richards was referring to the overall effect of on women’s health services if the health overhaul legislation was repealed and not specifically the effect of defunding her group.

  9. If you keep posting LIES I will have to delete you. I have MYSELF been checked for cervical cancer at PP with Paps. MANY friends have as well. The numbers are above. Learn to read and then follow your heavenly goddamn rules and quit speading lies.

  10. Breast cancer referral service…not breast cancer screenings. Cervical cancer referral service…not cervical cancer tests. Give birth control including the abortifacient morning after pill. Check! Abortions. Check! “Body image consultation”. Check!

    Planned Parenthood-killing your children and reducing the non-white population since 1948.

  11. The best way to avoid unwanted pregnancy is to stop having sex when you’re not married. Boom! 100% effectiveness when done as directed. Abstain. In the case of married people, when you know you’re fertile, don’t do it. Natural Family Planning helps this along. Submitting to the will of God works. Also, abstinence from sexual intercourse prevents the need for artificial hormones which cause breast cancer-a fact that Planned Parenthood won’t tell you, nor Susan B Komen.

  12. It would all be well and good if 1) the abortion was only done in medical needs cases (to protect the health of the mother)) 2) if Planned Parenthood had any stake in ‘women’s health issues’. Planned Parenthood does nothing with regard to pap smears, breast health (even though Susan B Komen gives tons for breast cancer research), or any other gynecological issue. Planned Parenthood is simply in the business of subverting existing law and providing abortions.

  13. All Planned Parenthood has to do is to stop providing the means to kill unborn babies and all this hoopla goes away. Supposedly it’s only 3% of the services.

    Hellfire! All these filth have to do is spin off the infanticide stations into a separate company supported w/ 100% private sector money and the problem goes away.

    And you blame the GOP and those who hate the idea of killing the only innocents on the planet when it’s obvious that Planned Parenthood and the mockeries of women that are the modern Feminists care more about killing babies than women’s health?

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