Tuesday, April 13, 2021

The judge allows Texas to remove planned paternity from the Medicaid program

Texas has long sought a ban on Planned Parenthood, which provides abortions from Medicaid to Texas. Medicaid funding does not cover abortions except in cases of rape or incest or when the woman’s life is at risk, dating back to 1976, due to the Hyde Amendment.

Several Texas Planned Parenthood affiliates sued the state in November last month in light of a federal appeals court order to proceed to ban Planned Parenthood from the program and allow states to determine whether the provider Medicaid Whether or not they are eligible to participate.

The groups emphasized that the Texas Health and Human Services Commission failed to issue “a fair notice of termination” from the program. Later that day, a Texas County judge temporarily blocked his expulsion from the Medicaid program, with the state slated for the following day.

But in a ruling on Wednesday, Travis County Civil District Court Judge Lora Livingston wrote that the groups “do not grant any authority for a motion to have the court pass a notice of termination to the injunction (Texas Office of Inspector General).”

“This decision has not been made lightly,” Livingston continued. “In the light of the ongoing public health crisis, there is a need to pay attention and investigate the risks of the person losing health care and medical care. The facts related to the termination in this case give me a lot of pause. However, (groups) have put the federal Selected. The courts as a platform for the merits of their claims … (which) should be determined by the federal courts. “

The impact of Planned Parenthood’s departure from the program can be starked. In 2019, Planned Parenthood provides health care to more than 8,000 Medicaid recipients in Texas, according to Most recently available figures From the organization.
According to 2020 data From the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation, Texas has a minimum Medicaid income eligibility limit as a percentage of federal poverty for a parent with two children. In addition, Texas has had more than 2.7 million Kovid-19 cases and more than 45,000 deaths from the virus. Data from Johns Hopkins University.

In a statement Wednesday, Planned Parenthood Action Fund President Alexis McGill Johnson accused the Government of Texas, Greg Abbott, a Republican, of “continuing to put his politics in front of those who serve him was chosen.”

“As Texas grapples with the deadly woes of the epidemic and the effects of a deadly winter storm, thousands of people who rely on Medicaid will now face another obstacle created by the government. Abbott: Finding a new provider in a state There has been a lack of a provider, ”she said. “It didn’t have to be this way for Texas.”

CNN reached out to Abbott for comment. Texas Health and Human Services Commission chief press officer Christine Mann declined to comment on the case.

Bonin Lee-Gilmore, director of state media campaigns at the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said the organization is “exploring all our options” regarding the next steps to remain in the program.

Texas Health and Human Services Commission Planned paternity affiliation reported in 2015 It was cutting the organization from the state’s Medicaid program, citing a recently released undercover video from an anti-abortion activist group as evidence of the violation. But a federal judge ruled in 2017 that the state Medicaid could not stop funding There was no evidence in the video from the provider saying the anti-abortion activist group that Planned Parenthood violated ethical or medical standards.
After an appeals court finding last year, Texas employed parenthood affiliates Asked Texas Health and Human Services Commission in December if they can remain in the Medicaid program during the pandemic, and if not, “allow our patients to take care of their immediate health needs during this crisis” for a six-month grace period. Stages of this epidemic, and to allow us to help our patients find new providers ready to accept new patients insured through Medicaid. “

In a January 4 letter, the state commission, citing a court order, declined his request to remain on the Medicaid program. The commission barred affiliates from accepting new Medicaid patients, but the day after the Planned Parenthood affiliates sued in Texas, a “30-day grace period” for transitioning patients to new providers ending in February gave.

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