Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, receives hundreds of millions of dollars each year in federal taxpayer funds. It's a massive organization and one that continues to push forward with expansion plans in many parts of the country.
There's some very encouraging news in Virginia where the state Department of Health has made a staff recommendation to deny Planned Parenthood’s application to add two operating rooms to its clinic in Virginia Beach.
Before Planned Parenthood can go ahead with its plans to add the operating rooms it must obtain a certificate of public need from the Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Health. The Commissioner considers eight factors before issuing a certificate and one of the first steps in this process is the staff recommendation.
There's growing concern over Planned Parenthood’s application for expansion. In Virginia, 2nd trimester abortions can only be performed in a hospital. And, the addition of the two operating rooms in Virginia Beach would allow Planned Parenthood to be designated as such.
Although Planned Parenthood has stated the application is not about performing 2nd trimester abortions, their response to questions from the state say differently. When asked to clarify what additional procedures would be provided if the project was approved, Planned Parenthood’s response stated, “If approved, a number of different procedures could be offered to women … Procedures would include diagnostic hysteroscopy and dilation and curettage.” Dilation and curettage (D&C) is a common form of abortion during the 2nd trimester.
In response to the staff recommendation of denial, Planned Parenthood may request an Informal Fact-Finding Conference (IFFC). The Commissioner is scheduled to make a final determination on July 8th, but this date may change if an IFFC is requested.
We will be monitoring the status of this application and will be filing a public comment with the Virginia Department of Health opposing Planned Parenthood's request.