Patients in El Paso were greeted with somber news when they arrived at Planned Parenthood today. All 6 of the Planned Parenthood clinics in the city have closed due to financial problems. According to the El Paso Times:
The organization’s interim executive director, Analinda Moreno, announced the shutdown Friday.
“Advising the staff about the closing today was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do,” she said. “Our patients have always been our first priority, and we are still doing everything we can to provide transfer services. We made this decision with them in mind and in their best interest, and we hope they understand that.”
Moreno, who held back tears at times, said financial pressures necessitated the closing.
“There were many factors that came into the decision,” she said. “We knew eight days ago that there was just absolutely no other way other than to close. Now our concern is negotiating a smooth transfer for all our patients with their consent, but it has been a challenge trying to contact all of them.”
That’s going to be a large task. The clinic served more than 11,000 women, most of them low-income. The Planned Parenthood clinic had served El Paso for 72 years. This is such a disappointment.
Sadly, the El Paso Planned Parenthood clinic is not the only facility in a financial pinch. A clinic in Lynchburg, West Virginia closed in April. A clinic in the greater Seattle area closed in March. And a clinic in the Upper Hudson River Valley in Latham, New York closed in January. All of these clinic closures were the result of financial problems.
You can help prevent future clinic closures by going to Planned Parenthood’s website and making a donation. Today is the last day for matching funds, so do it now.