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Guess Which 4 Groups Would Be Disproportionately Hurt by "Defunding" Planned Parenthood
Hint: It’s not the old, rich, white men, trying to shut Planned Parenthood down.

Legislation to “defund” Planned Parenthood will hit  people who rely on federal insurance and public health programs. That’s largely people who already face barriers to  accessing health care as people with low incomes, people of color, people who live in rural areas — who make up the majority of Planned Parenthood’s patients. Meanwhile, the impact of “defunding” Planned Parenthood on people in the LGBT community and whose identities intersect would be particularly acute.

So, it’s anti-abortion politicians like these who want to take basic health care away from people like these.

Impact of “Defund” on People With Low Incomes

With the aim of shutting Planned Parenthood down completely, national “defund” legislation would close health center doors to at least 60% of Planned Parenthood’s patients — those who use public programs like Medicaid (the government-funded insurance plan for people with low incomes) and Title X (the government-funded family planning program, which helps people with low incomes).

Of course, public programs are already prohibited from covering abortion. “Defunding” keeps people who use public programs from getting preventive reproductive and sexual health services like birth control, STD tests, breast cancer screenings, and family planning education at Planned Parenthood health centers. Many of these patients couldn’t get these services anywhere else — and, like we said, many of them are people with low incomes, people of color, and people who live in rural areas.

Impact of “Defund” on People of Color

People of color in the U.S. are less able to access quality health care due to the intersecting consequences of racism, sexism, classism, xenophobia, and other systemic barriers. So, they’re more likely to rely on federally funded programs to access health care.

The Black Community

“Defunding” Planned Parenthood would be devastating to Black communities. Key points:

  • Of the 2.5 million people who rely on Planned Parenthood for health care every year, 370,000 identify as African American or Black.
  • Among nonelderly Americans on Medicaid, 11 million are Black.

If they were prevented from accessing Planned Parenthood, many Black patients would have no other place to go for the services Planned Parenthood provides.

This harmful legislation wouldn’t just keep Black patients from getting care – it would undermine their ability to obtain full reproductive freedom. Too often, Planned Parenthood is the only health care provider many patients access. That means their care is more than just reproductive health services – Planned Parenthood connects patients with resources to improve other areas of their lives.

The Latino Community

“Defunding” Planned Parenthood would be devastating to the Latino community. Key points:

  • Around 575,000 Latinos come to Planned Parenthood health centers annually (nearly a quarter of Planned Parenthood’s patients).
  • Among the nonelderly Americans on Medicaid, 18 million are Latino.
  • If they were prevented from accessing Planned Parenthood, Latino patients may have no other place to go for the services it provides.

Planned Parenthood sees patients regardless of immigration status and is one of the only places undocumented people can turn to for care. Given that the majority of undocumented immigrants in the U.S. are Latino, “defunding” legislation would have a disproportionate impact on them.

What’s more, “defunding” would put two crucial Planned Parenthood programs at risk of disappearing: Raíz, which helps Latinos access health care and sex education, and Promotores de Salud, which brings reproductive health education into Latino homes and community-gathering locations.

Impact of “Defund” on People in Rural Areas

If patients who rely on public programs are blocked from care at Planned Parenthood, many would have nowhere else to go. There simply aren’t enough other reproductive health care providers out there. In areas where other providers do exist, many don’t take patients who rely on public health programs. Key points:

  • 21% of counties have no safety-net family planning alternative should their local Planned Parenthood health center close.
  • More than half of Planned Parenthood’s health centers are located in rural and underserved communities.
  • More than two thirds of states already report difficulty ensuring enough providers for Medicaid.
  • Providers of ob-gyn care who accept Medicaid, such as Planned Parenthood, are in particularly short supply.

Impact of “Defund” on the LGBTQ Community

“Defunding” Planned Parenthood also would negatively impact LGBTQ health. Members of the LGBT community face greater health challenges than their heterosexual peers because of stigma and discrimination. People in the LGBTQ community who also are people of color, or have low incomes, or who live in rural areas — or whose identities intersect — have even more obstacles to reproductive health services. For example, LGBTQ people of color face particularly high rates of discrimination from medical providers, and systemic harassment.

Planned Parenthood understands that LGBTQ people have the right to safe abortion services, access to contraceptives, STD testing and a range of other health services free from stigma, discrimination or coercion. Losing Planned Parenthood would lose this safe space for LGBTQ people seeking basic health care.

Say It Loud: #IStandWithPP

If anti-abortion politicians “defund” Planned Parenthood, shut down its health centers, and block its 2.5 million patients from care, a national health disaster would ensue — and the groups mentioned in this blog would be hurt the most. Take a stand against cutting them off from care. Take action to stand with Planned Parenthood and its patients!

The Fat Liberation Manifesto

1. WE believe that fat people are fully entitled to human respect and recognition.

2. WE are angry at mistreatment by commercial and sexist interests. These have exploited our bodies as objects of ridicule, thereby creating an immensely profitable market selling the false promise of avoidance of, or relief from, that ridicule.

3. WE see our struggle as allied with the struggles of other oppressed groups against classism, racism, sexism, ageism, financial exploitation, imperialism and the like.

4. WE demand equal rights for fat people in all aspects of life, as promised in the Constitution of the United States. We demand equal access to goods and services in the public domain, and an end to discrimination against us in the areas of employment, education, public facilities and health services.

5. WE single out as our special enemies the so-called “reducing” industries. These include diet clubs, reducing salons, fat farms, diet doctors, diet books, diet foods and food supplements, surgical procedures, appetite suppressants, drugs and gadgetry such as wraps and “reducing machines”.

WE demand that they take responsibility for their false claims, acknowledge that their products are harmful to the public health, and publish long-term studies proving any statistical efficacy of their products. We make this demand knowing that over 99% of all weight loss programs, when evaluated over a five-year period, fail utterly, and also knowing the extreme proven harmfulness of frequent large changes in weight.

6. WE repudiate the mystified “science” which falsely claims that we are unfit. It has both caused and upheld discrimination against us, in collusion with the financial interests of insurance companies, the fashion and garment industries, reducing industries, the food and drug industries, and the medical and psychiatric establishment.

7. WE refuse to be subjugated to the interests of our enemies. We fully intend to reclaim power over our bodies and our lives. We commit ourselves to pursue these goals together.

FAT PEOPLE OF THE WORLD, UNITE! YOU HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE ….

By Judy Freespirit and Aldebaran
November, 1973
Copyright The Fat Underground

On Being a Non-Native

Dear Tumblr,

I am surrounded by beauty.  Each day I am greeted by the sun rising over the mountains on my morning walk to work.  Weekend hikes take me to awe-inspiring views.  This is sharply contrasted by the people I am here to serve.  People who are marginalized and forgotten about by most of society.  People who have welcomed me into their lives.

I elected to spend a month working for the Indian Health Service because, quite frankly, I am ignorant about Native Americans.  I come from a white, middle class background and my exposure to cultures not my own is lacking.  Though many of my peers are seeking to do audition rotations or overseas trips for 4th year, I wanted to broaden my experiences here in my own country.  So my girlfriend and I packed up the car and drove to our assigned Native American reservation.

The health problems here are dramatic.  Crime and violence reach rates seen in downtown L.A.  Patients are brought to the Emergency Department with BACs of 0.80 and walk out with BACs of 0.40 (for the record you are considered driving impaired when your BAC is 0.08).  Some areas of the reservation seem more like 3rd world countries in regards to poverty and living condition.  The impact of western culture is ever present in the sky-high diabetes rates.  

But the people are kind and noble.  They are more than the statistics presented about their population.  They are intelligent, yet quiet.  After just a few weeks I am finding myself comfortable in their presence, and more adept at making them comfortable in mine.  My introduction now includes a brief joke; my interview is less direct than what I might use with anglo people in my own community. 

The hospital we work for is small enough that providers literally work in all departments.  Board certified pediatricians see adults; internists see pregnant patients.  Hospital Wi-Fi is non-existent, and sometimes the internet is so slow we use paper charts.  It is a magical community where doctors practice the type of medicine I dreamt about before med school.  My heart feels a longing to stay in this simpler place forever. 

But this cannot last.  Before long I have to return to the hustle and bustle of an academic medical center.  My hospital has its own magic, thought it has lost its luster from the hours and hours I have spent inside its walls.  Perhaps it will seem a bit shinier when I return; or perhaps I will shine a bit brighter from this experience.  And maybe I will return one day, to this mountain hospital.  But for now I have to begin preparing for my next big training adventure.  

T-minus 6 months until I officially become an MD.      

Hopefully I will have time to write more about my experiences in the coming days.

Always yours,

The Disagreeable Doctor

One Million Mobile Phones Combat Malaria In Africa

by Michael Keller

Finally, a case of mobile-phone tracking that’s more hopeful than creepy. Malaria researchers have used 9 billion anonymized phone call records to identify disease hotspots and make smarter plans to combat it. 

A team from universities and organizations in the UK, US and Namibia collected a year’s worth of phone data from 1.19 million subscribers in the African country, which represents 52 percent of the population. Information from the phones let researchers reconstruct the movement of people around the country. They then combined this with malaria diagnosis records and topographic and climate data.

“Attempts to clear the disease from an area can be ruined by highly mobile populations quickly reintroducing the parasite which causes malaria,” said Andy Tatem, a geographer at the University of Southampton and University of Florida who led the project. “Our study demonstrates that the rapid global proliferation of mobile phones now provides us with an opportunity to study the movement of people, using sample sizes running in to millions. This data, combined with disease case based mapping, can help us plan where and how to intervene.”

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