What Is Planned Parenthood? Is Planned Parenthood Really Free?
Planned Parenthood is a nonprofit organization that provides reproductive health services to both men and women. Planned Parenthood is often misunderstood by the public, so here we will explore what they do, what services they offer, and whether or not they are free.
Planned Parenthood offers a wide variety of services to both men and women. The largest share of their resources is focused on reproductive health care for women, including contraception (birth control), STD testing and treatment, emergency contraception (the morning-after pill), cancer screenings, and abortion. Planned Parenthood does not offer vasectomies or male sterilization services. Other health care provided by Planned Parenthood includes Well-Man Exams, Pap smears, and other forms of HPV treatment, as well as erectile dysfunction (ED) screenings for men.
Planned Parenthood Is Not Always Free.
Planned Parenthood offers free services to women that are under poverty level or otherwise unable to pay for these services. Medicaid is often used to pay for medical services used by low-income women and men, including contraception, STD testing and treatment, cancer screenings, other sexual health services, and abortion. When trying to qualify for Medicaid in order to get free services from Planned Parenthood or other providers who accept Medicaid, it can be difficult if you are not sure what counts as income when applying for Medicaid.
What About Abortion Services At Planned Parenthood?
It is worth noting that Planned Parenthood does not perform abortions at all their centers, but only at select health centers in certain parts of the United States. Furthermore, these health centers may be subject to state budget cuts and other attacks from conservative lawmakers seeking to defund Planned Parenthood.
Planned Parenthood Targeted By Anti-Abortion Lawmakers.
Anti-abortion lawmakers are targeting Planned Parenthood because of the abortions they provide. The Hyde Amendment prevents federal funding from being used for abortions unless the pregnancy was a result of rape or incest or if it would endanger the mother’s life. Many Republican lawmakers oppose this amendment and seek to defund Planned Parenthood regardless.
Access To safe Abortion Services Is a Human Right.
Many liberal citizens and groups, including former president Barack Obama, have spoken out in support of Planned Parenthood. They believe that by defunding this organization, low-income patients will lose access to their cancer screenings, birth control, STD testing and treatment services, and abortions. Many people are concerned about the possibility of dangerous self-induced abortions, as well as an increase in the number of unwanted children.
Planned Parenthood Misconceptions.
Planned Parenthood is not free clinic where you can just walk in off the street with no questions asked. They provide high quality confidential service regardless.
Another misconception about Planned Parenthood is that their services are only available to low income people. While it’s true that they do provide care for those who cannot afford it, anyone can receive services from Planned Parenthood.
A lot of people think Planned Parenthood performs abortions on teenagers and young girls, which is not true. In reality, the vast majority of patients are in their 20s or older. The reason for this misconception may be due to misinformation from anti-abortion activists who have been known to stand outside Planned Parenthood clinics and shout things like, “You are murdering your baby by going there!” or “Planned Parenthood is where you go to kill your baby!” Young women may choose not to visit a health care center if they feel ashamed, intimidated, or threatened.
An Important Role In Our Society.
An estimated 1 in 5 American woman has visited a Planned Parenthood at some point during her lifetime for their healthcare needs. It is clear that the organization plays an important role in our society.
If you want more understanding of what Planned Parenthood actually does and how they help people across the United States, take a look at their website or give them a call today!