GOP to HHS: Let states cut off Planned Parenthood

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Federal law already bans federal funding for abortion; Indiana's law would cut off all of Planned Parenthood's Medicaid funding because it provides abortions in addition to a range of other health and family planning services.

The Health and Human Services Department said the tactic is illegal. States cannot determine whether a healthcare provider is qualified to offer Medicaid-funded services based solely on the fact that they offer a specific procedure, HHS said.

But the Republican senators, led by Sen. Orrin HatchOrrin HatchHow to marry housing policy and tax reform for millions of Americans Though flawed, complex Medicaid block grants have fighting chance A guide to the committees: Senate MORE (R-Utah), said in their letter that HHS's determination "represents a significant departure from Medicaid’s longstanding practice of having the states – not the federal government – set reasonable standards for qualified providers."