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State drops facility review requirement for Planned Parenthood clinic in N.O.

Site of the Planned Parenthood Health Center under construction on S. Claiborne (Source: WVUE) Site of the Planned Parenthood Health Center under construction on S. Claiborne (Source: WVUE)
NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

Planned Parenthood says the Department of Health and Hospitals has backed down from a requirement that the organization obtain a facility need review in order before proceeding with plans to provide abortion services in New Orleans.

According to Olivia Watkins Hwang of DHH, the change issued to the facility need review process gives Planned Parenthood the ability to apply for a license as an outpatient abortion facility. 

In a news release, the organization says it can now move forward with plans for a health center under construction in New Orleans.

In the statement, Cecile Richards, President of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America says:

"Today marks a major victory for the women of Louisiana, who will have increased access to critical health care, including safe, legal abortion. Planned Parenthood will stop at nothing to fight for the patients who rely on us for care, in Louisiana and across the country."

In February, Planned Parenthood filed a notice of appeal with the state after DHH ruled it had not demonstrated the need for another abortion facility in Louisiana.

Planned Parenthood's $4 million health center in New Orleans is expected to open later this year. Planned Parenthood says it will offer reproductive healthcare, cancer screenings, STI testing and treatment and HIV screening, in addition to abortion services.

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