ATLANTA – The White House is expected to announce plans to gut Title X, the nation’s family planning program that provides contraception and other basic preventive services to 4 million patients each year. According to reporting, the administration will move to block patients from accessing contraception, cancer screenings, STI testing, and other preventive care at specialized reproductive health care providers including Planned Parenthood.
The administration’s plan will place families in Metro Atlanta, Augusta, Savannah, and rural Georgia under attack. Many of these families would qualify for healthcare under the Affordable Care Act if Georgia politicians had accepted federal funding for Medicaid expansion.
“The administration’s move would have a devastating impact on the healthcare for low income working families and teen pregnancy prevention services,” stated Andrea Young, Executive Director of the ACLU of Georgia.
News reports indicate that the White House is proposing a rule that would implement a “gag rule” to prohibit any health care provider from participating in the Title X family planning program unless they agree not to refer patients for abortion services. It would apparently also place new, onerous restrictions on reproductive health care providers, designed to prevent them from participating in the Title X program if they also provide referrals or abortion care outside of the program.
“What the White House is proposing is government censorship 101,” Ms. Young continued. “When Georgia families go to their doctors’ office, we expect them to be free to use his or her constitutional right to free speech to give us the best advice without concern about whether the best advice pleases a politician. The health and well-being of Georgia families must be the only priority.”