"Cats have enormous patience
with the limitations of the human mind.
They realize...that we have an infuriating inability to understand,
let alone follow, even the simplest and most explicit of directions."
- Cleveland Amory
Planned Parenthood is the name of several federations of health
clinics that are spread out across the world, (the International
Planned Parenthood Federation, various regional federations, as
well as country-specific ones) focusing on issues related to reproductive
rights. It is both a reproductive services provider and a political
organization that seeks to advance and preserve the legal status
of the services it provides. It is a vocal political advocate of
comprehensive sex education and holds a pro-choice position on the
issue of abortion and expression of sexuality. This article focuses
on the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA).
Facilities and funding
PPFA is a federation of 120 independent Planned Parenthood affiliates
around the United States. These affiliates together operate nearly
850 locations, offering a variety of services to more than 5 million
women, men and teens each year. Services include contraceptive (birth
control) services; emergency contraception; screening for breast,
cervical and testicular cancers; pregnancy testing and pregnancy
options counseling; abortion services; testing and treatment for
sexually transmitted diseases; sexuality education, menopause treatments;
vasectomies and tubal ligations, and more. Not all services are
available at all locations.
According to a recent statement from Karen Pearl, recent past interim
president of PPFA, Planned Parenthood is the "largest source
of reproductive health care in the (United States)". In
2003, Planned Parenthood provided 244,628 surgical abortions, the
largest of any abortion provider in the U.S. .