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Numbers aren’t whole story on women’s clinics

A PolitiFact reader requested us to fact-check an e-mail Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., despatched to constituents simply after the House handed the newest health care invoice. We zeroed in on a part of a “frequently asked questions” part that sought to elucidate a number of the invoice’s provisions:

“Why are you cutting women’s health services?”

“We’re not. In fact, we’re expanding women’s access to health services by redirecting Planned Parenthood dollars to community health centers, which vastly outnumber Planned Parenthood clinics.”

Loudermilk’s workplace informed us the knowledge within the FAQ part got here from the workplace of House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis. “Our goal is making sure women get the kind of care they need and we believe that can best be achieved by putting money into community health centers, which provide similar services as Planned Parenthood but vastly outnumber them,” stated AshLee Strong, a spokeswoman for Ryan.

From our analysis, we discovered that there are certainly extra group health facilities than Planned Parenthood clinics — however that doesn’t imply redirecting dollars to them shall be “expanding women’s access to health services.”

Loudermilk has some extent on the numbers.

We checked out a census of clinics that present contraceptive providers revealed in April 2017 by the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive-health nonprofit. The group tallied up numerous forms of clinics, probably the most quite a few of that are “federally qualified health centers” — outlined by the federal authorities as “safety-net providers that primarily provide services typically furnished in an outpatient clinic.” Such amenities can embrace group health facilities, migrant health facilities, homeless health care facilities, and public housing main care facilities.

For 2015, the census tallied 5,829 federally certified health facilities nationally, in comparison with 676 Planned Parenthood clinics. That’s a ratio of higher than Eight-to-1, so the adjective “vastly” appears applicable.

Would redirecting funding to those facilities increase women’s entry to health providers? This assertion is extra questionable.

Even if group health facilities have been capable of serve each affected person Planned Parenthood at present serves, that wouldn’t be “expanding women’s access to health services,” it will merely be sustaining it. The closure of as many as 676 Planned Parenthood amenities would require numerous enlargement of assets elsewhere simply to maintain tempo, earlier than any “expansion” of entry begins.

And there’s purpose to consider that group health facilities might not be capable of decide up the slack if Planned Parenthood facilities disappear.

The common Planned Parenthood clinic served 2,950 sufferers for contraceptive providers in 2015, in comparison with 320 for the typical federally certified health middle, in accordance with the Guttmacher census.

Co
mmunity health facilities are already working with a scarcity of employees, making any speedy enlargement that a lot trickier.

When the Atlantic investigated how ready Iowa health clinics have been to select up sufferers from Planned Parenthood, they discovered that lists of clinics offered by Republican lawmakers included “a dentist’s office, a school nurse, and a youth shelter” in addition to one clinic that had closed and a number of other that didn’t present family-planning providers.

“They’re assuming we’re the alternative,” Ted Boesen, CEO of the nonprofit Iowa Primary Care Association, informed the journal. “But we’re waiting to see what kind of a scale it is.”

Loudermilk stated that within the House Republican health care invoice, “we’re expanding women’s access to health services by redirecting Planned Parenthood dollars to community health centers, which vastly outnumber Planned Parenthood clinics.”

Purely on the numbers, he has some extent: There are extra federally certified health facilities than Planned Parenthood clinics. But the notion that bypassing Planned Parenthood would imply “expanding” entry is doubtful. We price the assertion Mostly False.

In the House Republican health care invoice, “we’re expanding women’s access to health services by redirecting Planned Parenthood dollars to community health centers, which vastly outnumber Planned Parenthood clinics.”

— Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., May four, in an e mail to constituents


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