Unplanned outcome: Obamacare diminishes Planned Parenthood's role


Unplanned outcome: Obamacare diminishes Planned Parenthood’s role

Many formerly uninsured women who once depended on Planned Parenthood for low-cost access to birth control, abortions and other reproductive healthcare no longer need it. They have gotten coverage under President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, making them less reliant on the organization’s 700 clinics. In many states, Planned Parenthood is losing clients as newly insured patients turn to medical providers included in their health plan’s networks, according to data provided to Reuters and interviews with more than two dozen of the organization’s affiliates.

Some people relied on us because they were uninsured prior to the Affordable Care Act. Now they can go anywhere for care, and some of them have been.

Lori Carpentier, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Mid and South Michigan

The Affordable Care Act has also brought some benefits to the organization, its leaders say. In interviews, affiliates all reported a significantly larger percentage of insured visitors among their remaining patients. Some locations — including Ohio, New York City, Chicago and the Northwest — are even adding clients as they expand services to better compete for women with medical coverage. Data also show that the U.S. abortion rate is down, which can in part be attributed to Obamacare and increased contraceptive coverage, making it easier for women to afford long-lasting birth control methods, such as IUDs, that require fewer office visits.