By Mona Shand
The fate of federal funding for Planned Parenthood clinics in Indiana and across the nation still is up in the air, and that has some women concerned about access to the health-care services they rely on.
In Bloomington, Lyndsey Schmid, 33, had been going to Planned Parenthood regularly for check-ups and screenings for 16 years. When she and her husband decided it was time to start a family, she said, that's where she went as well.
"They were there," she said. "They were there when I needed them, and one of the things I love most about them is they allowed me the ability to plan and space, and choose when I was going to become a mom."
The move to defund the organization began after an anti-abortion group released secretly recorded videos purporting to show that Planned Parenthood illegally profits from the sale of fetal tissue. However, an investigation by the state of Indiana found no evidence of wrongdoing.
Without Planned Parenthood, Schmid said, she wouldn't have been able to afford the care she received over the years, beginning as a teenager and right through the moment she found out she was pregnant. She said that big news came in a Planned Parenthood clinic.
"I have a really good relationship with the staff at the Bloomington location since I've been going there for so long," she said, "and there were a lot of hugs and jumping up and down, and it was really neat to experience that moment with them, at that time."
Since most federal funding can't be used for abortions, Planned Parenthood has said the effort to defund would mainly target preventive services, including cancer screenings, birth control and testing for sexually transmitted diseases.
Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky currently serves close to 70,000 patients a year, at eight locations across the two states.