Keeping Planned Parenthood going on San Juan Island…
A group of concerned islanders gathered for a private event that discussed the impact of the local Planned Parenthood, what has been accomplished by the national Planned Parenthood Federation, and what islanders can do to help support our community’s Planned Parenthood health center.
Here are some of the facts for 2011 solely from the clinic here in Friday Harbor:
- they served 371 islanders last year, 300 of which were from San Juan.
- Services included clinical visits (primarily for the distribution of contraceptives), education, preventative testing for breast and cervical cancer, and checking for STIs.
- 47% of people seen fell into the lowest income level ($931.00/month)
On a broader scale, here were a few things that may be of interest:
- One of five people in America go to a Planned Parenthood, and one of eight babies in San Juan, Skagit, and Whatcom counties are born to Planned Parenthood patients. One of 17 people living in San Juan, Whatcom, or Skagit counties received a service from MBPP last year.
- Women’s preventative health care and family planning had not originally been a part of the Affordable Health Care Act. Planned Parenthood played a huge role in successfully pushing for an amendment that included this care for all women in America. Starting August 1st, 2012 all birth control is covered on health plans and specifically allows women to forgo the copay requirement when purchasing contraceptives.
- Of the million and a half online followers who joined Planned Parenthood last year, half are male.
Interested in helping Planned Parenthood stay open in Friday Harbor?
The simple answer is make a donation to help pay the rent so Planned Parenthood, a nonprofit organization, can continue to see patients on a sliding scale charged on their ability to pay. Currently the clinic is open for one day of the week (Thursday). If you are interested in volunteering on a regular basis with confidentiality in mind, please email Linda McCarthy at linda.mccarthy(at)mbpp.org, who oversees the Planned Parenthood health centers for all three counties.
Don’t want to volunteer but want to stay informed? Linda also has an e-newsletter, so email her to be put on the list.