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Planned Parenthood stands strong

January 25, 2017
Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

To the editor:

When the Republican controlled Senate and House state they will "defund Planned Parenthood," what exactly does this mean? First of all, their words are misguided. Planned Parenthood does not receive a blank check from the government. Quite the contrary, the only public funds that go toward Planned Parenthood in Florida are reimbursements for preventive care services that some low-income, or Medicaid patients receive. Ending these reimbursements not only will leave these thousands of Floridians with nowhere to receive care, it also strips away Planned Parenthood's ability to apply for federal education grants.

Since many of these services are preventive, they have a huge impact on the well-being of our communities, and are too important to risk through political wrangling. But please be assured: Planned Parenthood stands strong - we will be here for our patients no matter what the federal government says or does. Today and every day our goal is to welcome and provide care for all patients, without judgement.

Our financial status is stable, solid and balanced. Here in central and Southwest Florida our medical staff facilitated 58,137 patient visits, with services including birth control, breast exams, HIV tests, Plan B long-reversible contraception, vasectomies, colposcopies, well-woman visits, and surgical and medical abortions.

We have taught and trained 12,000 individuals in comprehensive sex education and health programs, done in partnership with nonprofit agencies, juvenile detention centers, schools and community groups.

For our patients we have rolled out on-line appointment making, a 24 hour healthcare chat line, on-line form completion, revamped waiting rooms, patient education and followup programs in each of our 11 health centers.

Finally, we will continue to stand and fight any and every unreasonable and harmful law that creates undue burdens and dangerous conditions for women seeking abortions. In June 2016 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down just such a law, creating a ripple effect across the country as other state laws, including Florida, were found to be unconstitutional. And we won't go back - we will continue to stand and fight - and most important, we are not alone. On behalf of our patients, volunteers, medical professionals, staff members and board members, may we thank all who have been our champion, partner, and friend. We aren't going anywhere. We will always be here for our patients. And our doors stay open.

To donate to Planned Parenthood, you may do so online at, or by mail with check or Visa, MC, Amex, Disc card to Planned Parenthood of Southwest & Central Florida, Gompertz Family Regional Headquarters, 736 Central Avenue, Sarasota, Fl 34236-9932.

Jill Dillon




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