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State Senator Michael Breitbach says there will be other family planning options available in the Decorah area

Posted: Wed, Mar 1, 2017 2:21 PM

Iowa Senate File 2 is legislation that would, in the words of the bill, "discontinue the Medicaid family planning network waiver effective July 1, 2017, and shall instead establish a state family planning services program."

The legislation has passed the Iowa Senate and has been sent to the Iowa House, where some revisions are expected, leading to passage of the bill.

Critics of the legislation say it will lead to the closing of family planning clinics in Iowa.  On Monday, the NEICAC Board voted to close the family planning clinic in Decorah on June 30th.

But the news release announcing the closing mentioned declines in insurance reimbursement rates and federal reimbursements in addition to declines in state funding.

State Senator Mike Breitbach of Strawberry Point--one of the co-sponsors of the legislation--says the closing of the Decorah clinic is unfortunate, but there will be family planning services available in Northeast Iowa through local hospitals and clinics.

NEICAC officials say that statement is true--but only for people who can afford the cost, which can sometimes be over $1,000 out-of-pocket, depending on what kind of insurance coverage--if any--the patient has.