In last night’s debate, President Obama said the following:
When Governor Romney says that we should eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood, there are millions of women all across the country who rely on Planned Parenthood for not just contraceptive care; they rely on it for mammograms, for cervical-cancer screenings. That’s a pocketbook issue for women and families all across the country, and it makes a difference in terms of how well and effectively women are able to work.
This has long been a Democratic talking point. Back in July, Senator Barbara Mikulski proclaimed:
One of the most important tools we women have is mammograms. But in the midst of the healthcare debate, they [Republicans] wanted to take our mammograms away from us. But, well, hey, not while I’m here!
But Planned Parenthood, with few exceptions, does not provide mammograms. To test the president’s statement in the real world, I called several Planned Parenthood offices in the New York City area today to ask about scheduling a mammogram. “We actually don’t offer that here,” one office told me. “You might want to call 311, they actually have lists of places you could go to.” When I asked, “You don’t provide them like the president said?,” I was told “No.”
Another office told me the following: “We don’t do mammograms, but I could definitely give you other places you could call.” When I mentioned the president’s statement, the woman said, “I’m not even sure because we’ve never offered mammograms.” Of the five offices I called, only the Hempstead, N.Y., location said it offered the service — on Fridays and not by an in-house technician. Listen to several of the calls below.