Planned Parenthood of the Heartland and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Iowa applaud the state Department of Human Services (DHS) for denying an emergency rule-making petition recently filed by a group of Republican lawmakers.

August 2, 2012

The petition demanded the state change its rules to immediately cease reimbursing abortions for rape and incest victims through Medicaid. DHS denied the petition as it would violate federal funding requirements and jeopardize more than $2 billion dollars in federal Medicaid funds to the state of Iowa.

“A woman who has been through the violent trauma of a rape or incest should not be re-victimized by our political system. ” 

“This petition would have put the health of Iowa women and their families at risk,” said Planned Parenthood of the Heartland President and CEO Jill June. “Thousands of Iowans rely on the Medicaid program every year. This decision ensures that those who need access to vital health care can get the services they need at a price they can afford.”

DHS concluded that no rule change will be made.

"DHS made the right decision,” said ACLU of Iowa Legal Director Rita Bettis. “The petition asked for a procedural run-around that was improper under Iowa law. It sought to withhold abortion coverage from a qualified woman. Only a woman facing those extremely difficult circumstances--not politicians--knows what decision is right for her."

“A woman who has been through the violent trauma of a rape or incest should not be re-victimized by our political system. We know that these crimes do not discriminate based upon a woman’s financial situation, and because of this decision by the DHS our laws won’t either,” said June.