(CBS) – The latest version of the White House-backed national health plan would hurt thousands of Illinois women, according to Planned Parenthood advocates.
One of the components would have drastically rolled back coverage for those who needed it most, CBS 2’s Dorothy Tucker reports.
Courtney Everette is a mother of two.
“I’m incredibly grateful to Planned Parenthood,” she says.
Everette was diagnosed with endometriosis as a teen and needed special medicine to control the condition. Initially, she relied on her parents’ insurance, but in graduate school she was uninsured and struggling to pay the $50 monthly cost.
“When I went to Planned Parenthood, the cost was reduced to around $20 a month. That’s what I could afford,” she says.
Planned Parenthood is able to provide women with affordable or free health care because, according to the Congressional Budget Office, about one third of the organization’s budget — some $450 million a year – comes from the government in the form of reimbursement from Medicaid.
That’s the money the Republican provision wanted to eliminate.
Julie Lynn works for Planned Parenthood. In Illinois, some 60,000 women depend on its services. About one third are Medicaid patients, and they’re the one who would not have access to free HIV testing, prenatal care, pregnancy tests and more.
“Other health care providers often don’t provide these services,” Lynn says.
There are Federally Qualified Health Centers that accept Medicaid patients, but Planned Parenthood says there are six counties in Illinois with no federal centers. The women there depend on Planned Parenthood, the organization says.