Thursday, September 03, 2015

louisiana lays bare the tangled-web of tard bidnis...,


NYTimes |  The political dispute embroiling Planned Parenthood here and nationwide is over abortion, though public funds are not permitted by federal law to be used for abortion, except in cases involving rape, incest or a pregnancy that threatens the mother’s life. Neither clinic in this state — like nearly half of all Planned Parenthood centers — performs abortions. What the Louisiana Planned Parenthood clinics did do last year was administer nearly 20,000 tests for sexually transmitted infections, as well as provide gynecological exams, contraceptive care, cancer screenings and other wellness services for nearly 10,000 mostly low-income patients.
“You can’t just cut Planned Parenthood off one day and expect everyone across the city to absorb the patients,” Dr. Taylor said. “There needs to be time to build the capacity.”

With the calls to stop funding for Planned Parenthood, a visit to New Orleans and Baton Rouge suggests that it would not be as easy to do without the nonprofit centers as some Republicans and their anti-abortion allies say. Other states would face similar problems.

Louisiana is among a number of states counted as medically underserved: It has a large poor and unhealthy population, with high rates of unintended pregnancies, a shortage of health professionals and too few who will accept Medicaid, as Planned Parenthood does.

“I think of it as sort of a triple whammy, particularly in the South,” said Cindy Mann, who until recently was the federal director of Medicaid, the joint state-federal program intended to help low-income Americans get medical care.

Congress’s investigative arm, the Government Accountability Office, reported in 2012 that four out of five Planned Parenthood patients nationally had incomes at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level, and two-thirds of states reported difficulties ensuring enough health providers for Medicaid patients, especially in obstetrics and gynecology.
Also, since most funds that Planned Parenthood receives from taxpayers are reimbursements for tending to Medicaid beneficiaries, experts in health policy say lawmakers cannot simply take money from the organization and redirect it to other facilities.