Audits showing Planned Parenthood’s alleged misuse of federal funds are further proof that the organization should be barred from receiving federal money, pro-life advocates say.
“The extent of waste and abuse in the nation’s family planning
programs, and specifically in those operated by Planned Parenthood, is
beyond disturbing,” Charlotte Lozier Institute president Chuck Donovan
stated upon the release of a joint report by the institute and the legal
group Alliance Defending Freedom on abortion clinics overbilling
taxpayer-funded health programs.
“Congress should do what the House of Representatives has twice voted
to do: end taxpayer funding to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s most
profitable abortionist, once and for all,” Alliance Defending Freedom
senior counsel Steven H. Aden stated.
The report, titled “Profit. No Matter What,” is based on dozens of
external audits and reviews of Planned Parenthood affiliates. It was
authored by Catherine Glenn Foster, a senior fellow in legal policy at
the Charlotte Lozier Institute, the research arm of the pro-life group
Susan B. Anthony List.
It was released on Wednesday, the same day that the House Select
Investigative Panel on Infant Lives released its over 400-page final
report on abuses and possible lawbreaking by abortion clinics,
universities, and tissue procurement companies in the fetal tissue
Planned Parenthood has a spotty track record, Donovan said, pointing to previous reports on the organization’s alleged abuses.
“This report joins earlier findings on issues of human trafficking,
failure to report statutory rape, alleged violations of fetal organ
trafficking laws, and other profound concerns that reinforce the need
for Congress to reallocate funds to agencies that respect human life and
put women first,” Donovan said of Wednesday’s report.
The CLI-ADF report is the fifth annual report by the groups on audits
of taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood and other “family planning”
clinics. The latest report includes new federal and state audits of
family programs and clinics.
The “research strongly suggests that Planned Parenthood and its
affiliates are engaged in a pattern of practices designed to maximize
their bottom-line revenues through billings to complex, well-funded
federal and state programs that are understaffed and rely on the
integrity of the provider for program compliance,” the report noted.
Overall, “nearly all” of 51 audits of Planned Parenthood affiliates
in 12 states showed that affiliates were overbilling Medicaid and other
publicly-funded health programs, costing taxpayers millions. “Title
XIX-Medicaid overpayments” at these affiliates amounted to over $8.5
And the waste and fraud may be much greater than that amount, the report claimed:
“The weight of evidence indicates that waste by Planned Parenthood
affiliates may be widespread, and suggests that such policies may be the
result of, at a minimum, a policy of benign neglect over billing
practices organization-wide by Planned Parenthood Federation of
America’s headquarters in New York City.”
Abortion clinics in some cases will have abortion-related services –
or abortions themselves – paid for by Medicaid or state family planning
programs. The Hyde Amendment prohibits federal Medicaid dollars from
funding abortions, except in cases of rape, incest, or when the life of
the mother is at stake.
Clinics will do this by utilizing “fragmentation” or “unbundling”
billing to have abortion-related services like counseling or a
pre-abortion examination paid for with public dollars, the report found.
Even abortions themselves may be billed to Medicaid. “In New York
alone during one four-year audit period, it appeared that hundreds of
thousands of abortion-related claims were billed unlawfully to
Medicaid,” the report noted.
One Nebraska audit found a Planned Parenthood clinic spending federal
funds on abortion-related expenses, and physician fees for a doctor who
only performed abortions. Over $3,500 in taxpayer funds were used for
abortion services there.
Other instances of abuse by clinics included giving prescription
drugs to clients without a physician’s authorization, “billing for
services that were not actually rendered,” “duplicate billing,” and
“failing to pay the bills for which an affiliate had already been
reimbursed with taxpayer funds.”
In California alone, one 2004 audit found that Planned Parenthood of
San Diego and Riverside Counties had overbilled contraceptive and Plan B
products by $5.2 million.
“Three federal audits specifically identify Planned Parenthood – and
only Planned Parenthood – as the problem in state family planning
program overbilling,” the report noted.
What should be done about Planned Parenthood?
The organization must be defunded of taxpayer dollars, CLI and ADF
Also investigations of the organization should examine
allegations of clinics “double-dipping” by receiving funds or payments
from clients or organizations and still billing Medicaid for those
Those allegations were made in a previous ADF report on Planned Parenthood and Susan G. Komen Foundation grants.
Back in August of 2016, the U.S. Government Accountability Office
responded to requests by members of Congress and opened an investigation
into Planned Parenthood’s use of taxpayer funds.
A previous GAO
investigation found that from 2010-12, Planned Parenthood Federation of
America and its affiliates received over $1.5 billion in taxpayer
dollars from federal and state funds.
Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion provider, with over 300,000 abortions performed annually.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) announced Thursday that in budget
reconciliation legislation that is under consideration, taxpayer funding
of Planned Parenthood would be redirected to community health centers
that do not provide abortions.
President-Elect Donald Trump made the defunding of Planned Parenthood
one of his promises to pro-life voters on the campaign trail in 2016.