August 10, 2012 — A New Hampshire antiabortion group says state officials should deny the renewal of pharmaceutical licenses to six Planned Parenthood clinics, the New Hampshire Union Leader reports.
New Hampshire Right to Life argues that the clinics lost their ability to provide birth control pills, medication abortion, emergency contraceptives and other prescription drugs in June 2011 when the Executive Council voted to stop state funding for the clinics.
Planned Parenthood of Northern New England then sought funding from HHS for the clinics, a move that might have affected the clinics' ability to provide the medications, according to the Union-Leader. Under a state law, prescriptions must be dispensed by a licensed pharmacist. Family planning clinics are exempt if they operate under a contract with the state Department of Health and Human Services.
Planned Parenthood applied to renew its pharmaceutical licenses in June, noting on the application that the clinics operate under a contract with federal HHS. However, the clinics also provide other services under a contract with the state DHHS.
New Hampshire Right to Life filed a complaint with the Board of Pharmacy in April that argues the exemption no longer applies. The Board of Pharmacy has not disclosed whether an investigation of Planned Parenthood is under way.
Planned Parenthood officials said the complaint represents an effort to interfere with women's access to care. "We are confident that we are now, as we have been for over 20 years, in full compliance with state pharmacy statutes and rules," Jennifer Frizzell, senior policy adviser to PPNNE said in a statement, adding, "We are fully licensed to dispense medications at each of our six health centers" (Hayward, New Hampshire Union Leader, 8/8).
Debra Ness, publisher & president, National Partnership
Andrea Friedman, associate editor & director of reproductive health programs, National Partnership
Marya Torrez, associate editor & senior reproductive health policy counsel, National Partnership
Melissa Safford, associate editor & policy advocate for reproductive health, National Partnership
Perry Sacks, assistant editor & health program associate, National Partnership
Cindy Romero, assistant editor & communications assistant, National Partnership
Justyn Ware, editor
Amanda Wolfe, editor-in-chief
Heather Drost, Hanna Jaquith, Marcelle Maginnis, Ashley Marchand and Michelle Stuckey, staff writers
Tucker Ball, director of new media, National Partnership