Planned Parenthood Closing Michigan Abortion Referral Center

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 26, 2011   |   12:38PM   |   Sturgis, MI

Planned Parenthood is closing yet another center — its fifth in the last few weeks — and this one comes in Sturgis, Michigan. The center did not do abortions but made referrals for them to abortion centers elsewhere.

Bob MacKenzie, vice president of medical business development of Planned Parenthood’s Michigan affiliate told the Sturgis Journal newspaper that the closing is related to economic and financial reasons. The abortion business already closed centers in Hillsdale and Sturgis and is now closing facilities in Three Rivers and Coldwater as well.

“These closings in no way alter our commitment to the many families in this region who are one unplanned pregnancy away from economic disaster,” MacKenzie said. “Staggering reductions in federal and state funding over the past two years have demanded that we optimize our resources.”

“We have notified our patients that they can continue to receive seamless, high quality care at our health centers in nearby Kalamazoo or Battle Creek,” MacKenzie told the newspaper.

The Planned Parenthood abortion business has leased space from Sturgis Hospital but that lease expired in May and the abortion group chose not to renew it or seek space elsewhere.

Rob LaBarge, Sturgis Hospital CEO, told the newspaper the hospital decided against renewing the lease.

“Our primary concern was providing patients access to family planning services, and as this is a service our medical community can provide, we decided to consider other options for the space and therefore did not renew the lease,” he said.

The closing of the Michigan Planned Parenthood center follows closings in Washington state and Pennsylvania two weeks ago.

The Planned Parenthood center at 137 S. Pugh St in State College, Pennsylvania, home to Penn State University, closed after operating for more than a decade. A press release from Planned Parenthood of Northeast and Mid-Penn indicated it came about because of the economic climate.

“The decision to close is a difficult one, and one that we regret having to make,” said president and CEO Kim Custer. “The combination of reduced reimbursements for services and increased costs has made it impossible for Planned Parenthood to sustain the services in this location.”

The center did not do abortions but referred students and others in the city for them. One employee at the center took another Planned Parenthood position while a second left the abortion business to find employment elsewhere.

Meanwhile, Kristen Glundberg-Prossor, spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, says the Washington state-based abortion  business will close its center in Silverdale because of less taxpayer funding from the federal government and the recession in the state. Planned Parenthood centers in Oak Harbor and Forks will close as well.

Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest (PPGNW) will be closing its Forks health center located at 231 Lupine Avenue, effective December 31. Also, PPGNW will be downsizing operations in Sitka, Alaska.