Iowa’s third largest metropolitan area, the Quad Cities area, is about to see its abortion facility, Planned Parenthood in Bettendorf, close its doors, after 18 years of operation. Planned Parenthood of the Heartland blamed the closure on the loss of state funding, the result of former Gov. Terry Branstad’s signing of a law that prohibits family planning facilities committing abortions from receiving state funding. Thus, on Friday, the Bettendorf Planned Parenthood facility will close.
Planned Parenthood of the Heartland President and CEO Suzanna de Baca said today:
It is absurd that politicians have forced women to travel hours out of their way in order to access basic health care. They attempted to feed Iowans this lie that there are plenty of other places to go for the same care — but women know the truth.
This statement would only be true if abortion were actually “basic health care.” (And Planned Parenthood knows abortion isn’t like other health care, because according to a former Planned Parenthood manager, they place what are, in essence, grief journals, in their recovery rooms for women to write in after their abortions.)
The truth is that there are numerous free and low cost health care facilities that do virtually everything Planned Parenthood does apart from abortions. As Live Action News has previously reported, these clinics outnumber Planned Parenthood by the thousands. The idea that politicians are “forc[ing] women to travel hours out of their way in order to access basic health care” is the real lie in this rhetorical spin. It makes for great newspaper copy; however, the reality is that no woman is being “forced” to drive out of her way for basic health care. In fact, there’s a place cheaper than Planned Parenthood right there in the Quad Cities. The Free Medical Clinic sees patients for no charge, even though they suggest a $10 donation.
Additionally, there’s a pregnancy help center open across the street from the soon-to-be-closed Planned Parenthood. The Women’s Choice Center will do pregnancy tests and ultrasounds for women, as well as other pregnancy-related health care services. The difference? They don’t kill preborn babies.
The Des Moines Register reports:
Abortion opponents hailed the Legislature’s decision to cut off much of Planned Parenthood of the Heartland’s public money. In an opinion piece published in the Register in June, Iowans for Life Executive Director Maggie DeWitte contended there are plenty of other clinics that could provide family planning services without offering abortions. “This is a victory for our state, and Iowans for Life is committed to continue working to see all abortion clinics closed in Iowa,” she wrote.
The Legislature’s decision meant Iowa had to forego about $3 million in federal Medicaid funding. Instead, the state is using about $3.3 million to recreate its own family planning network so that it can prohibit the funding of clinics that provide abortions.
So with that creation of a family planning network, even more services will become available. In actuality, women will probably see an increase of health care services in Iowa because of this funding decision.
The only real change in the Quad Cities area as a result of this closure is that it is now not quite as easy to kill preborn babies. The actual health care women need is available to them locally, free of charge.