Medical Students for Choice chapters across Ohio are opposed to defunding Planned Parenthood. This is not about abortion. This is about the health of our communities.
As medical students in 2016, we are taught not only about the human body and issues related to health, but also about the social and societal factors that influence health outcomes. On Sunday, Gov. John Kasich signed House Bill 294, which removes all state funding from Planned Parenthood. There are state and federal laws already in place that prevent any government money from going toward abortion (read up on the Hyde Amendment), so this bill is only defunding all the nonabortion services offered by Planned Parenthood. Ohio’s funding for Planned Parenthood goes toward testing for and treating sexually transmitted infections, birth control, resources for survivors of sexualized violence, cancer screenings and programs that have reduced infant mortality.
Access to health education and affordable contraception lowers the rate of abortions. Why would Kasich defund the measures which reduce the number of abortions in Ohio?
Furthermore, we know that while accessing health care services is a challenge for many individuals, Planned Parenthood has made it known that they are open to everyone. We know that patients rely on Planned Parenthood for their health care. We know that Planned Parenthood provides many robust services both within and outside clinic walls. We know that these programs and services improve the communities they serve, and we know that while there are other organizations doing similar work, Ohio is not in a position to cut programs that have proven to be effective. We know that Kasich has made the wrong choice.
By signing HB 294, Kasich is putting our patients, communities and state in a position to have worse health outcomes.
Medical Students for Choice chapters at Ohio State University, Case Western Reserve University, Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine and University of Toledo College of Medicine