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Texas tests Trump administration over abortion providers

17 Mai 2017

The only Planned Parenthood in the state of Wyoming is closing down this summer. Texas is hoping that Trump, who once made the laughably daft suggestion that Planned Parenthood stop performing abortions in exchange for keeping its Medicaid patients, will show about as much deference to this longstanding rule as he has to other health-care protections for low-income Americans.

Spokeswoman Whitney Phillips said patients would be referred to three local providers: Cedars Health, Community Health Center of Central Wyoming and Casper-Natrona County Health Department.

The branch officially closes on July 21, with services slowing down in the coming weeks.

Mansares said while Wyoming may no longer have any physical locations, Planned Parenthood will remain present in the state through their partnership with NARAL and a 24/7 text messaging service.

"We're looking at what opportunities may exist for us", Williams said. "We'll be working really closely with our patients to make sure we get them connected to another provider". All three welcome walk-ins and appointments and accept Medicaid, she said.

The fact that Casper had other places for women to receive comprehensive reproductive health care was a factor in the decision to close the Planned Parenthood clinic here, Mansanares said. Under the Healthy Texas Women program, low-income Texas women ages 18 to 44 are eligible for services including pregnancy testing, STD testing, breast and cervical cancer screenings, contraceptive counseling and postpartum depression screenings, as well as help with chronic diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

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In 2013, Texas' program began entirely state-financing a program when it cut out providers that "perform or promote elective abortions", or contract or affiliate with providers that do so.

The manager has been offered work at another Planned Parenthood health center or a "very generous" severance package, Mansanares said. But critics say if Trump administration officials grant the state's request, it could send a message to Texas that its efforts to restrict Planned Parenthood - and access to abortion - are permissible.

"After so many women have been injured and killed by so-called "safe" abortions at Planned Parenthood, one would think that defunding them would be an easy thing for Congress to accomplish", said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman.

"For those who believe abortion is the killing of an unborn child, we don't want to subsidize that through our tax dollars", Horne said.

"The Trump administration must shut down this latest attack on women, because if the rest of the nation goes the way of Texas, it would result in a public health crisis for millions of women", Raegan McDonald-Mosely, the chief medical officer for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, told the Times. "The harm hasn't been done in other states", she said. Advocates have said that the Healthy Texas Women provider network isn't providing beneficiaries with adequate care because the doctors have small Medicaid practices or aren't knowledgeable about family planning.

"Their generosity was not in any way tied to us having a sign up on a building that was open three days a week", she said.

Texas tests Trump administration over abortion providers