Governor Mary Fallin has requested that the Oklahoma Health Care Authority (OHCA) terminate its contracts with the two Planned Parenthood affiliates operating in the state because of their high rate of billing errors.
Public funding for Planned Parenthood has been under fire throughout the country this year after a series of undercover videos were released. Those videos show Planned Parenthood officials negotiating for the sales of the body parts of unborn babies.
Fallin urged OHCA Chief Executive Officer Nico Gomez to consider appropriately terminating contracts with Planned Parenthood of Central Oklahoma in Oklahoma City and Planned Parenthood of the Heartland in Tulsa. She also asked Gomez to recommend terminating contracts with similar providers found to have a high billing error rate, have had past findings of overbilling, or associate with other providers who do not rigorously adhere to the high standards that are required to be granted access to public funds.
In 2015, the state paid the two Planned Parenthood affiliates $100,145 for 19,546 claims; the vast majority of Planned Parenthood services qualify for a 90 percent federal match, making the total payment slightly more than $1 million. In 2014, the state paid $204,631 for 36,741 claims; federal matching funds made the total slightly more than $2 million.
The governor earlier this year asked the OHCA to review Planned Parenthood’s operations to ensure no state funds were being misused. The review of the two affiliates showed no improper use of state Medicaid funds, but showed a billing error rate of 20.3 percent rate at one and a 14.2 percent error rate at the other.
“These results are alarming,” Fallin wrote in a letter to Gomez. “These errors result in overbilling to the Oklahoma taxpayer. The lack of attention to the requirements imposed on a responsible provider is a continuing problem for these Planned Parenthood affiliates.”
Terminating the contracts with the two Planned Parenthood affiliates, which operate in about six metropolitan locations in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, will not interfere with a woman’s ability to have a free choice of health care provider services, Fallin wrote.
More than 120 other metropolitan and rural health care providers are available in the state, the governor wrote.
These include federally qualified health clinic sites, rural health clinics and private Medicaid providers, all of whom provide a broader spectrum of health care services than Planned Parenthood’s metropolitan locations.
“We have a joint responsibility to the citizens in Oklahoma to hold providers to high standards that are imposed to allow an entity to receive taxpayer dollars,” Fallin wrote. “The recent behavior of the Planned Parenthood affiliates clearly demonstrates that these providers do not value the opportunity to serve their fellow Oklahomans with taxpayer funds. Indeed whether willful or simply negligent, the consistent submission of improper billings should disqualify these Planned Parenthood providers from participation in the Oklahoma Medicaid program.”
Planned Parenthood doesn’t do abortions in Oklahoma but they are the top abortion group in the nation, with 327,653 unborn babies killed in their mothers’ wombs in 2013. Planned Parenthood got $528,000,000.00 in government funds in 2014.
Alabama, Louisiana and New Hampshire all have eliminated funding for the country’s leading abortion provider after the release of videos providing evidence Planned Parenthood trades in baby body parts.
“Planned Parenthood does not represent the values of the people of Louisiana and shows a fundamental disrespect for human life,” said Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal. “It has become clear that this is not an organization that is worthy of receiving public assistance from the state.”
U.S. senators voted 53-46 on August 3 to end federal funding of Planned Parenthood but the vote failed because 60 votes were needed for cloture.
Casey Mattox, senior counsel of Alliance Defending Freedom, said in a written statement, “Not one more penny should go to Planned Parenthood, a billion-dollar abortion dealer caught on camera negotiating the sale of hearts, lungs, and livers from aborted babies. Our tax dollars instead should fund local public health clinics, which outnumber Planned Parenthood locations more than 10 to 1 and are not tainted by constant scandals and misdeeds. America doesn’t need Planned Parenthood.”
Sen. James Lankford, R.-Oklahoma, and Rep. Diane Black, R.-Tennessee, have introduced identical bills that would place a one-year moratorium on federal money for Planned Parenthood while Congress investigates the organization.