By Kathleen Gilbert
WASHINGTON, D.C., October 26, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The president of Planned Parenthood has argued that the new federal health care reform ought to consider funding all contraception with taxpayer dollars because preventing new children leads to less government expense.
In an appearance on the Bill Press radio show, PP president Cecile Richards said that, although the costs of the federal health care bill already promise to skyrocket out of control, federal officials ought to consider covering birth control a priority because of the "cost savings" benefit of fewer children being born.
"I think it's important, Bill, to understand that unlike some other issues of cost, birth control is one of those issues that actually saves the government money," said Richards. "So an investment in covering birth control actually in the long run is a huge cost savings because women don't have children that they weren't planning on having and all the sort of attendant cost for unplanned pregnancy.
"So we actually feel that covering birth control is not only it's the right thing to do for women, it's good for women, it's good for their health care, but it's frankly good public policy."
The remarks reflect sentiments aired by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi when prompted to justify the contraceptive funding in last year's massive stimulus bill. The speaker explained that preventing births "will reduce costs to the states and to the federal government."
Richards also touted artificial birth control as "the most normative medical care that exists in America," calling the push for its universal availability a "no-brainer."
Planned Parenthood and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recently launched a massive campaign, called "Birth Control Matters," to pressure the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to ensure that all prescription contraception is completely covered by health insurers under "preventive care."
Rita Diller, the national director of Stop Planned Parenthood International, indicated that the true reason for the abortion giant's campaign was not expanded contraceptive availability, but an expanded profit margin.
"In reality, birth control is already widely available to women and even young girls, on a sliding scale basis, so that those who cannot afford the dangerous steroidal pills can receive them at little or no cost," Diller told LifeSiteNews.com. Therefore, she said, covering all birth control as preventive care "will not increase its availability, but will dramatically increase Planned Parenthood’s profit margin, by not only requiring new private health plans to cover 100% of the cost, but also requiring state Medicaid programs to pay 100% of the cost for all Medicaid recipients."
Diller noted that, according to the testimony of former Planned Parenthood chief financial officer P. Victor Gonzalez, the organization purchases contraceptives "at rock bottom prices and resells it at up to 12 times its acquisition cost."
"If Medicaid is required to pay 100 percent of the price Planned Parenthood charges for prescription birth control, it will be laughing all the way to the bank, at our expense," she said.
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has challenged Planned Parenthood's campaign, arguing that contraception and sterilization "prevent not a disease condition, but the healthy condition known as fertility." In addition, the bishops pointed out the possibly severe repercussions such a mandate would pose for conscientious health care providers, especially in the case of abortifacient "contraceptive" drugs such as ella and other emergency contraception.
See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:
Planned Parenthood Pushes for Universal Birth Control as Coalition Fights Abortifacient Ella 'Contraceptive'
USCCB Officials Urge HHS Not to Require Coverage of Contraception, Sterilization