President Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services just issued a rule that bars states from defunding abortion providers like Planned Parenthood. The final version of the rule, which was released Wednesday, stipulates that states cannot block federal Title X funds from contraception providers that also perform abortions.
In the past several years, a number of states have taken actions to restrict participation by certain types of providers as subrecipients in the Title X Program, unrelated to the provider’s ability to provide family planning services. This has caused limitations in the geographic distribution of services and decreased access to services.
The final rule clarifies the Title X program regulations by adding that no grant recipient making subawards for the provision of services as part of its Title X project may prohibit an entity from participating for reasons other than its ability to provide Title X services.