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No Planned Parenthood Centers Operate Mammogram Machines

by Steven Ertelt | Washington, DC | LifeNews.com | 5/28/12 4:38 PM

National

Earlier this month, it appeared the first Planned Parenthood abortion clinic would offer mammograms to women, but additional information shows not one Planned Parenthood abortion facility yet offers mammograms directly to women.

Planned Parenthood has misrepresented itself for years saying that it does mammograms for women at its abortion centers. That it did not provide such services for women was a sticking point in the battle over the grants the Komen for the Cure breast cancer charity provided the abortion business.

This month, Komen announced it is providing the Arizona abortion business a $21,430 grant for its offices in northeast Phoenix and Scottsdale to provide mammography screenings using a mobile mammography unit. The three Planned Parenthood locations that will be using the unit include Northeast Phoenix Health Center, Scottsdale Health Center and Chandler Health Center.

The web sites for each of the centers indicate they still only offer “mammogram referrals” (such as Northeast’s).

Randy O’Bannon of the National Right to Life Committee, says there’s “no indication that Planned Parenthood has actually installed mammogram machines at its clinics. Mammograms will apparently only be available when the mobile unit is scheduled to visit, and it isn’t clear who will own or run the mobile center.”

“To put this in context, it is important to remember a few things that came out in the midst of the whole Komen/Planned Parenthood funding controversy.   If you recall, Komen offered two explanations for its proposed change in policy,” O’Bannon explained. “It said future breast health grants would not go to organizations that are under investigation by local, state, or federal authorizes—a position it quickly retreated from under enormous pressure. But Komen offered a second reason: efficiency.”

“Though Planned Parenthood touts the large number of “breast cancer exams” it performs each year (nearly 750,000 for 2010 in its latest annual report), it usually neglects to tell people that, as a rule, it doesn’t do mammograms, but only manual breast exams.  For those patients to actually get mammography, they had to go elsewhere,” he continued. “Again, nothing here tells us that Planned Parenthood has actually gone as far as to actually purchase a mammogram machine or to hire the staff to operate them or interpret the results.   The machine and the mobile unit would obviously cost much more than $21,000.  The grant apparently simply covers the cost of those Planned Parenthood patients receiving the services from the mobile unit.”

“What the $21,430 grant from Susan G. Komen does do, however, is enable Planned Parenthood to declare that it does indeed offer mammograms, something they’ve had great difficulty saying over the past few years, because it doesn’t seem to have been the case,” he concluded. “It’s nice to know that Planned Parenthood has finally gotten around to offering mammograms to a handful of poor women in the Phoenix area. They’ve been doing abortions there for a number of years.”

Before this grant, Planned Parenthood itself admitted that it does not perform mammograms for women — something the Komen for the Cure breast cancer charity confirmed last year.

In its email to people concerned about the Komen-Planned Parenthood connection, a Komen official admits Planned Parenthood doesn’t provide mammograms for women with its grant money. Komen makes it clear the money is merely funneled through the abortion business to legitimate medical centers that actually perform mammograms.

“When a mammogram is indicated, a patient is often referred to a local program, such as the state’s breast and cervical cancer program. In other cases, the Komen Affiliate’s grant to Planned Parenthood may include funds to pay for mammograms outright. When this happens, a local provider performs the mammogram, and is then reimbursed by Planned Parenthood using the Komen grant funds,” Komen admits.

LifeNews.com and pro-life blogger Jill Stanek followed up with phone calls to various Planned Parenthood centers and confirmed they do not do mammograms.

Then, the organization Live Action released videotaped footage of calls to 30 Planned Parenthood centers nationwide in 27 different states where abortion facility staff were asked whether or not mammograms could be performed on site. Every one of the Planned Parenthood centers admitted they could not do mammograms. Every Planned Parenthood, without exception, tells the women calling that they will have to go elsewhere for a mammogram, and many clinics admit that no Planned Parenthood clinics provide this breast cancer screening procedure.

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“We don’t provide those services whatsoever,” admits a staffer at Planned Parenthood of Arizona while a staffer at Planned Parenthood’s Comprehensive Health Center clinic in Overland Park, Kansas tells a caller, “We actually don’t have a, um, mammogram machine, at our clinics.”

Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood director in Texas, also condemned Planned Parenthood’s misleading statements on mammograms.

“For so long PP has touted that they are a provider of mammogram services,” she said. “This is just one of the lies that Planned Parenthood uses to draw people into their clinics.  PP is not able to provide quality services on their own, so they are forced to lie to the public about services they don’t provide–and mammograms are just one of those services.”