South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster (R) signed an executive order cutting off all public funds for abortion clinics in the state, the governor’s office said in a Friday statement.
The executive order directs state agencies to stop granting funds to any medical practice affiliated or operating with an abortion clinic.
McMaster also directed the state’s Department of Health and Human Services to seek waivers from the federal government allowing the agency to exclude abortion clinics from the South Carolina's Medicaid provider network.
The governor also directed the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services to coordinate with the Department of Health and Environmental Control to make a publicly available a list “of all qualified non-abortion women's health and family planning providers” that operate within a 25-mile radius of abortion clinics excluded from the state’s Medicaid provider network.
McMaster said in a statement that "there are a variety of agencies, clinics, and medical entities in South Carolina that receive taxpayer funding to offer important women's health and family planning services without performing abortions.
"Taxpayer dollars must not directly or indirectly subsidize abortion providers like Planned Parenthood," he said.
Vicki Ringer, South Carolina director of public affairs for Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, said in a written statement that the affiliate “has provided annual exams, birth control, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, and lifesaving cancer screenings — such as clinical breast exams and Pap tests — to women, men and young people in South Carolina for over 50 years."
Planned Parenthood does not receive Title X funding or any other grants through the state of South Carolina. We do serve patients who rely on Medicaid for their insurance, and provide basic health care to men and women who participate in the state health insurance plan.
Given this clear-cut information, today’s executive order issued by Governor McMaster is simply a political stunt. While he spends taxpayers’ time and money on scoring political points, Planned Parenthood South Atlantic will continue to focus on providing the wide-range of accessible, affordable health care services that our patients, and his constituents, rely on.