From John Pisciotta,
Director of Pro-Life Waco
The Killeen Daily Herald has reported that Central Texas Komen Foundation has made a grant of over 70% of its funds ($67K) to Planned Parenthood Waco. (see article here)
PP has been a top Komen grantee for a decade. Wherever you live, I am asking you to contact Komen Central Texas in one or more ways. (Sample statement is provided below). The time is right for a change by Komen. We need you! Silence is surrender. What follows is my urgent request first. Then you will see the 12 talking point sent out by Komen and my response in red to these talking points.
Here is the Pro-Life Waco Urgent Action Request.
Waco’ 2014 Komen Race for Cure grants: 70¢ of every dollar goes to Planned Parenthood
Urgent Action Request: Contact Komen Central Texas to express opposition: You don't need to be from Waco to collaborate—Wichita, Winston-Salem, or Washington DC will word just fine. Waco prolifers need YOUR help.
Snail mail: 3000 Herring Ave, 4E, Waco, TX 76708
Phone call: 254-753-3037
Emails to each of these:
Here are the Central Texas Komen talking points:
1. That the Planned Parenthood we fund here in our Central Texas service area does NOT perform abortion. All surrounding hospitals denied them surgical access that is required to perform one.
2. That the two local hospitals in Waco, however will accept a voucher given to the patient by Planned Parenthood to perform the screening mammogram and any diagnostic procedures at their breast screening facilities.
3. That Planned Parenthood in Waco is the ONLY facility in our 6 county service area that will provide a medical home to ALL residents living within our 6 county service area. The hospitals have to work with an outside source to setup a medical home before they can provide breast screenings to a patient.
4. That you have to have a medical home before you can receive a screening mammogram in the state of Texas, this is to ensure the patient has somewhere to go to for follow-up, if necessary.
5. That Planned Parenthood in Waco is the ONLY facility willing to apply for and receive state funding for the Breast and Cervical Services Program, which doubles the funding we have in our area to cover not only Breast Screenings, but Cervical Screenings to women most in need. Therefore, our funding is used to catch the women who do not qualify for any state funded programs, which helps us catch individuals that are more likely to fall through the cracks due to them making too much, but do not have insurance or the money to pay for the screening nor insurance.
6. That the State of Texas did not extend Medicaid making the same amount of individuals, in our population, vulnerable, of again, falling through the cracks.
7. That if a County is fortunate to have a Family Health Center, or County funded facility that you have to be a resident of that county before you can qualify for services and that the majority of women we cover for screening mammograms would NOT event qualify for this funding due to them being considered working poor or funding depleted before the end of the year.
8. That Planned Parenthood in Waco is the only facility that has submitted a grant to our Affiliate requesting funding to provide clinical breast exams, screening mammograms, and diagnostic procedures to residents residing in all of our 6 counties.
9. Our Affiliate is the only organization that provides women access to screenings in our service area who would normally not qualify for any other assistance, and through our partnership with Planned Parenthood this is made possible.
10. Due to the lack of support our grant funding for our local grants program has been cut in half of what we were able to fund in the past:
-- When our funding is limited our independent review panel is trained to rank grants in an order that will make the most of the funding we do have to offer.
-- Lack of funding limits the grant applicants who applied for funding in the past because they cannot or do not provide the services needed outlined in our Community Profile to ultimately decrease the mortality rate of breast cancer in our service area causing them to rank lower than the ones who do provide the services. In the past we were able to provide several different organizations funding even though they only catered to one county or didn’t provide a medical home. Now we do not have the funding to do so.
-- The lack of funding has also limited the funding we have to sustain programs that provide support to survivors due to our focus needing to be centered around access to services that can potentially promote Early Detection in the hopes of early detection and the survival of this dreadful disease.
-- This lack of support stems from many different issues, one of them being the miscommunication and misguided information provided to individuals in our area on what our Affiliate does and why our relationship with Planned Parenthood exist. Which is a shame because without either organization in our six county service area could result in 100’s to 1,000’s of women going without breast health care in our area due to no other facility having the means to provide these services.
11. In 2014, Planned Parenthood in Waco provided 46 clinical breast exams, 267 screening mammograms, and 141 diagnostic services through Komen funding. So far for 2015 their grant has provided 30 clinical breast exams, 75 screening mammograms, and 72 diagnostic services.
12. We get approximately 10 to 15 calls and emails per month of women looking for access to breast cancer screenings, and we have only had 1 that was not willing to contact Planned Parenthood and was willing to let the suspicious find on their breast sit there until another outcome was resolved.
Our Affiliate’s primary focus is to ensure individuals in our service area has access to the screenings necessary to detect breast cancer early, when it is most treatable, to promote an optimal outcome and survivorship. We must partner with whomever we can (???? Really, no screen whatsoever.) to ensure these services are accessible because we are in the business of saving lives from breast cancer, not depleting services that would cause more breast cancer deaths. There is definitely limitations on the facilities able to and willing to provide these services and we are always encouraging facilities to submit grants to organization that can provide the access to care that is so desperately needed in our Central Texas communities.
In summary, Central Texas Komen, unlike over 90% of other affiliates, has chose Planned Parenthood as its prime grantee. Planned Parenthood is a divisive and highly controversial organization. Additionally, Planned Parenthood in Waco operates with a low standard of medical care. Its top-level healthcare providers are nurses rather than physicians. Central Texas Komen should be proactive and change its grant policy to put an end to this controversy and reestablish dynamic Komen growth and service.