Local Planned Parenthood patients may not notice a difference for now, but New Jersey and Pennsylvania residents who have donated to the organization likely are being asked to give more as it prepares to live without Title X funding.
Planned Parenthood’s national leadership announced Monday that it was pulling out of the federal program, which provides money for sexual and reproductive health care for uninsured and underinsured people, because of a new rule that prohibits clinics from referring women to abortion providers. The funding was not used for abortions.
“We are not about to let the Trump-Pence administration bully us into withholding information from our patients,” said Dayle Steinberg, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Southeastern Pennsylvania. “This is about providing the full range of sexual and reproductive health services, and that includes referring to abortion when that’s what the patient wants.”
The organization, which performed 8,800 abortions using other funding in the fiscal year that ended June 30, does not need to cut hours, raise prices, or lay off staff, she said.
Nationally, about four million women receive services under the Title X program, which distributes $260 million in family planning grants to clinics.
In Pennsylvania, Planned Parenthood health centers see about 40% of the state’s 169,000 Title X patients, Steinberg said.
The organization, which has an $18 million budget, would have to bring in an extra $1.3 million in donations to make up for the Title X funds, she said. Donors already give about $3 million a year. “We sent out a [email] blast to 9,000 of our donors yesterday,” she said.
"Certainly in the long run, that’s not going to be sustainable.”
New Jersey’s two Planned Parenthood chapters — Planned Parenthood of Northern, Central and Southern New Jersey, and Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan New Jersey — are now relying on emergency funds to keep operating. “We don’t know how this is going to play out,” said Casey Olesko, communications director for the Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey. “We will be looking to our generous donors to fund-raise.”
Planned Parenthood’s 22 clinics in New Jersey see about 70% of the state’s Title X patients, Olesko said.