Last Saturday, April 9, Fox & Friends co-hosts Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade were discussing the debate over federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Their argument suggested that Planned Parenthood was not very important and thereby does not need properly funded. Their argument rested on a claim that services such as mammograms and paps smears are easily accessed at your local Walgreens.
Here was what Douchey (whoops, I meant Doocy) and Kilmeade had to say:
Doocy: And the thing about it that was audacious was the fact that he [Sen. Harry Reid] was talking about Planned Parenthood being this great provider where women can get blood pressure checks, and pap smears, and breast--
Kilmeade: Which you can get at Walgreens.
Doocy: ---examinations. Exactly right.
Except that it was exactly wrong. Walgreens has since released a statement stating that they do not offer such services as pap smears or breast exams.
To add fuel to the fire, Glenn Beck, another Fox contributor, stated on his show that ‘hookers’ are the only ones who actually use Planned Parenthood (and they aren’t really humans, anyway.) I tried listening to his entire radio clip, but I felt so sick to my stomach that I made it to the five minute mark and had to stop the tape. The blatant misogyny and lack of compassion for women that this man spouts is disturbing beyond words. But, I digress.
“Neither Walgreens, nor its in-store healthcare clinics, Take Care Clinics, offer pap smears or breast exams,” stated Lauren Nestler, Take Care Clinic spokeswoman.
Walgreens does offer services such as blood pressure screenings and flu vaccinations, but that is a far stretch from gynecological examinations.
In order to further prove that Fox News got it wrong (yet again in terms of those silly things known as FACTS) I encourage all women to head to their local Walgreens and simply ask when they can schedule their next pap smear because Fox News stated that Walgreens is now offering those services. Once Walgreens explains that they do not offer said service, I then would like women to write into Fox News and ask them why they lied about where women’s care can be found on national television.
If anything, this only proves how vital Planned Parenthood is to the millions of women, men and adolescents worldwide who do use their services. One in five women in the United States has visited a Planned Parenthood at least once in her life, and they do much more at their clinics than provide abortions. They also provide nearly one million Pap tests a year and more than 830,000 breast exams each year. Planned Parenthood provides nearly four million tests and treatments for STIs each year, including HIV.
Planned Parenthood focuses on prevention, and 83% of their clients receive services to prevent unplanned pregnancies. Only 3% of all Planned Parenthood health services are abortion services, although the media is insistent on focusing in on that and that alone. Planned Parenthood also aids with many sexual health issues that relate only to men, including checkups for reproductive or sexual health problems, colon cancer screenings, erectile dysfunction services, jock itch exam and treatments, male infertility screenings and referrals, routine physical exams, prostate cancer screenings, UTI tests and treatments and vasectomies.
I don’t see Walgreens picking up that slack any time soon.