Ohio to cut Planned Parenthood funds within one month

The state of Ohio plans to cut off Planned Parenthood from block grants and other state and federal funds, under a recently upheld state law that prevents public money from organizations that perform elective abortions.

The grants and contracts will end by April 20, according to a termination notice sent last week by Ohio Department of Health.

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The money that will be blocked is mostly federal money that flows through Ohio for prevention programs. Some of the grants include money for breast and cervical cancer screenings, infant mortality reduction initiatives, Violence Against Women Act grants and HIV/AIDS prevention.

Locally, Planned Parenthood has health centers in Dayton, Springfield and Hamilton, with services such as family planning and STD testing. Abortions are not performed at these locations but referrals are given.

Ohio Department of Health said it will arrange for “the orderly transition of services” to other groups not affected by the law.

Iris Harvey, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio, said the short notice from the state will “gravely impact patients and communities across Ohio.”

Harvey said in a statement that the group provides health care and education “to tens of thousands of people, many of whom live in underserved areas across the state.”

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“These are services that other health centers simply cannot replace. Ohio continues to put politics over people, putting them at greater risk. This isn’t about politics, this is about lifesaving health care,” she said.

The state was able to cut off the funds after the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals gave a split decision March 12 upholding the state law and reversing a lower court ruling, according to the Associated Press.

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