Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Statement by Gov. Rick Perry’s Communications Director Allison Castle Regarding Sebelius Announcement that Feds Will Deny Women’s Health Program Waiver

Friday, March 09, 2012  •  Austin, Texas  •  Press Release

Gov. Rick Perry's Communications Director Allison Castle today released the following statement in response to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius' announcement in Houston that the federal government is denying Texas' waiver for the Women's Health Program:

"The fact that the Obama Administration would announce its decision to deny care for more than 100,000 low income women during a press event before giving official notice to the state is a clear demonstration of the political motivation behind this decision. This tactic is an affront to the more than 100,000 women served by this program. We await official word from the Administration on this matter and in the meantime, at Gov. Perry's direction, the state continues to move forward to ensure low-income women will not lose access to this preventative care. Gov. Perry will continue to fight this egregious federal overreach and defend life, our state's laws and the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Women's Health Program Facts:
• The program has been in effect since 2007, and provides preventative health care, including breast and cervical cancer screenings to more than 100,000 low-income, Texas women.
• Texas law prohibits tax dollars from funding abortion providers and their affiliates.
• Under federal law, states administer Medicaid and have the right to set the criteria for "qualified providers" in the program, not Washington. This is exactly what Texas has done, in accordance with Texas law. Texas law prohibits tax cheats, deadbeat parents or people suspected of serious abuse from participating as a provider in Medicaid, even though federal law does not.
• There are more than 2,500 qualified providers in the WHP that operate more than 4,600 locations across the state.
• Planned Parenthood represents less than two percent of providers in the WHP.
• Planned Parenthood's cost per client is 43 percent higher than most other providers, according to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

Governor's Initiatives:
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