Planned Parenthood of Michigan, Inc.
On October 1, 2019 Planned Parenthood of Michigan (PPMI) was forced out of the federal government’s Title X family planning program, creating an urgent need to replace $4.36 million dollars – 20 percent of the annual budget. Title X provided free or low cost access to birth control, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, testing for HIV, and lifesaving screenings for breast, cervical and prostate cancer to our most vulnerable patients. While Planned Parenthood of Michigan was able to successfully raise replacement funding for care last year, the need for Title X backfill funding is critical for the year ahead.
PPMI must replace its Title X funding for family planning services and reproductive health care. Without Title X funding, thousands of individuals throughout the state who rely on Planned Parenthood for their reproductive health care could lose access to family planning services. Our greatest challenge is to raise enough funds to avoid a disruption in services for patients who already experience a disparity in sexual health outcomes. Without access to family planning services the disparity in the rates of infant mortality, maternal death, abortion, unplanned pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections will continue to increase.
The negative outcomes of unintended pregnancy can include delays in initiating prenatal care, reduced likelihood of breastfeeding, increased risk of maternal depression and increased risk of physical violence during pregnancy. If women do not receive prenatal care prior to giving birth there is a greater risk for birth defects and low birth weight infants. Without access to sexual health care the number of sexually transmitted infections and HIV will also increase and individuals will not receive lifesaving screenings for breast, cervical and testicular cancer.
Providing health care to patients during the COVID-19 pandemic is also challenging and impacts everyone, however it is our patients who have historically experienced ongoing inequities in access to health care who need us the most. Our patients who are uninsured, underinsured and who have low-incomes are often the same people in our community who are working in the service industry interacting with the general public because they do not have the luxury of working from home. When they need access to reproductive health care we must be there for them and provide care regardless of their financial status.
This request to the Skillman Foundation will be used to specifically serve our patients who visit our health centers in Detroit and our Corktown satellite health center. Last year we served more than 5,000 patients at these health centers and 50 percent of patients had incomes at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level.