Governor Scott Walker's administration recently announced that it will no longer contract with Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin (PPWI) as a part of the Wisconsin Well Woman Program. Under the Well Woman Program, in which PPWI has served as a state contractor for the past 16 years, women without insurance between the ages of 45 and 64 can get referrals for breast cancer, cervical cancer, and multiple sclerosis screenings at no cost.
PPWI indicated that this will effect over 1,000 women seeking cancer care from the organization. Teri Huyuck, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, stated, "The politics behind Governor Walker's plan to end Planned Parenthood's service to the Wisconsin Well Woman Program, both in care coordination and direct provision of cancer screenings and referral is becoming clearer. We urge Governor Walker and Secretary Smith to hear the voices of our patients and our community partners, asking them to put women's health above their personal politics and maintain Planned Parenthood's role in providing access to life-saving cancer screenings."
The change is expected to go into effect in January 2012.
Media Resources: National Partnership for Women and Families 12/19/11; Planned Parenthood Statement 12/15/11; Greenbay Press Gazette 12/14/11; Planned Parenthood Letter 12/12/11
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .