Planned Parenthood settles Texas Medicaid fraud case

Women's health group Planned Parenthood has agreed to pay the state of Texas $1.4 million to settle allegations of fraud in billing to a health program for the poor, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said on Wednesday.

But a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast strongly denied the allegations and said the group settled to avoid a lengthy battle with Texas.

The settlement is the latest in a series of confrontations between Planned Parenthood and the Republican-led state government of Texas.

It follows one week after Texas approved a new law that will force Texas clinics performing abortions to upgrade facilities to those of outpatient surgery centers, which could cost thousands of dollars for each clinic.

Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider operating 13 clinics in Texas which perform abortions, staunchly opposed the new law and has threatened to sue the state.

Texas had previously banned Planned Parenthood facilities in Texas from participating in a state health program for poor women which funds care such as annual exams, cancer screenings and birth control. Planned Parenthood sued the state but ultimately lost in court.

Investigators determined that Planned Parenthood "falsified material information in patients' medical records" in order to support fraudulent reimbursement claims, Abbott said.

Planned Parenthood said the allegations are without merit and the group was settling "as a practical matter."
Not mentioned in the article is that two of the three facilities Planned Parenthood recently closed were subjects of the investigation that had been oped after whistle blowers reported alleged abuses.  The article also complains about reduced funding for women's health but does not disclose that the Obama administration cut all funding for the program after Texas refused to permit Medicaid funding of Planned Parenthood facilities.  In other words liberals in Washington were unwilling to fund women's health facilities in none Planned Parenthood sponsored facilities.


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