Planned Parenthood funding cuts come with consequences

In February, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would prohibit any federal funding to Planned Parenthood and its health centers. Cutting funds for Planned Parenthood will affect many people, including those who are pro-life.

This is not an opinion focused mainly on abortion, nor is it a way to spark debate between those who are pro-life and those who are pro-choice. Those who are happy about the Planned Parenthood funding cuts fail to realize that abortions are not the only thing that will be affected.

Planned Parenthood consists of at least 800 healthcare centers nationwide, offering more than simply just education on parenting, sex, and birth control. They offer many screening tests and exams for women, from pap smears to pelvic exams. Sure, women can get the same things at the local trusted medical clinic. However, unlike many medical clinics where patients have to pay a fortune no matter what their financial state is, Planned Parenthood works to the best of their abilities to make sure women’s needs are being met at a price they can afford.

Here is a breakdown of what can and probably will change once the funding cuts take in effect.

  • Birth Control and Contraception –  At Planned Parenthood, patients are given information about many other types of birth control and advice on which one is most affordable and suitable for them.  The information goes beyond what is available in the typical high school health class, which helps to avoid  unplanned pregnancies.
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases – Planned Parenthood also offers more complete information on sexually transmitted diseases than the average high school does. While major hospitals charge an eyebrow-raising amount of money for an exam for a sexually transmitted disease, Planned Parenthood works to make sure  anyone can afford  the tests.
  • Exams – Planned Parenthood offers many types of health exams for women. They include pap smears, pelvic tests, breast cancer screenings, ovarian cancer screenings, HPV tests, and more. They also give information on female infertility, menstruation and prevention of  cervical cancer.

When the House voted to cut funding from Planned Parenthood, I assume that many  who are pro-life werecelebrating. Personally, I am pro-life, meaning if I were to become pregnant right now, I’d carry the baby to full term and put him or her up for adoption.

However, I understand why people have abortions. It is better that a baby be raised in a loving, financially secure environment than one in which a teen girl just throws the baby at her mother to take care of and continues on with her own life. I disagree with the federal government because they are basically raising the percentages of unintended pregnancies, especially for those who are teenagers.

I would also like to point out that the majority of people in the House of Representatives are men. Men do not get pregnant. They are not the ones who have to make the decision of having an abortion or carrying the baby to full term. The decisions about abortion should be primarily made by a woman because she is the one who gets pregnant and is ultimately the one who has to decide if an abortion is a better choice. To have a group consisting of mostly men cut funding from Planned Parenthood is insulting, and ridiculous.

What will funding cuts do? Well, because the government previously funded Planned Parenthood, they were able to charge clients based on their income, and offer everything for a cheaper price than a local clinic or hospital. Now, with the cuts, prices are certain to rise, giving people less equal opportunity to use the facilities. I’ll say it outright: It’s simply not fair. Too many people already can’t afford to get sick or hurt because they do not have health insurance and can’t afford surgeries, exams, and medicine they need.

When funding cuts affect Planned Parenthood, I honestly believe there will be an increase in unplanned pregnancies and abortions, and the life-saving health services it provides to women will become too expensive for some who desperately need them. Regardless of how you feel about abortion, isn’t that too high a price to pay?