Tennessee officials may soon have the power to stop Medicaid dollars from going to clinics in Tennessee that perform abortions.
This is meant to curb the power and influence of Planned Parenthood in Tennessee, according to a new article in Bloomberg.
“The move signals growing GOP interest in using administrative means to rein in providers that offer abortion and underscores state confidence in the Trump administration’s friendliness to the conservative policy priority,” the website reported.
Nationwide, the group received $543.7 million in taxpayer money in fiscal year 2016. Medicaid funds generally can’t get used to cover most abortions under the Hyde Amendment, Bloomberg reported.
The Tennessee Star has requested state officials give specific information about how much money abortion providers in Tennessee have received through Medicaid during the past three fiscal years. The Star expects to receive that information sometime next week.
Tennessee officials are asking the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to block providers that performed more than 50 abortions in the past year from its Section 1115 Medicaid waiver, Bloomberg reported.
The publication quoted an unidentified spokeswoman for the state’s Medicaid program TennCare.
“Public comments on the request close Sept. 23,” Bloomberg reported.
TennCare pays for health care for about 1.4 million people at a cost of about $12 billion per year, according to Bloomberg.
The website said South Carolina officials are doing the same thing in their state. Both states, Bloomberg went on, are following Texas’ lead.
“The Lone Star State was the first to oust Planned Parenthood from its Medicaid family planning program but has had to rely solely on state funds to support the program since 2013, when the Obama administration deemed the move unlawful and pulled federal funding,” Bloomberg reported.
“Texas doubled down in 2017 on its Healthy Texas Women waiver, asking the Trump administration for federal support.”
Nationwide, Medicaid is the primary public payer for family planning services, covering up to 75 percent of birth control services and supplies in the U.S. in 2015, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
“The health insurance program for the poor funds about half of Planned Parenthood patients’ care, the PP Action Fund says,” Bloomberg said.
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