Planned Parenthood Responsible for 3 Million+ ‘Extra’ Abortions, Study Shows


May 2, 2018
CONTACT: Mallory Quigley
[email protected] | 202-223-8073

New Peer-reviewed Research Refutes Cecile Richards, Shows Planned Parenthood Propped Up Falling U.S. Abortion Rates

Washington, D.C. – Today the national pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List) and its research arm, the Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI) rebutted statements by former Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards that redirecting taxpayer funding away from the abortion giant will cause abortion rates to rise and that “we [Planned Parenthood] do more to prevent unintended pregnancy and the need for abortion than any organization in this country.”

More than 85 national and state pro-life groups yesterday sent a letter to Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar asking him to revise Title X Family Planning Program rules to disentangle abortion centers from the Title X network and redirect taxpayer funding to alternative providers.

New research by CLI Vice President and Director of Data Analytics James Studnicki, Sc.D. and by John Fisher, Ph.D., J.D., published online in the peer-reviewed Open Journal of Preventive Medicine, finds evidence that Planned Parenthood has inflated the abortion rate in the United States, despite a significant overall decline in U.S. abortions for the last 30 years.

In “Planned Parenthood: Supply Induced Demand for Abortion in the US,” Studnicki and Fisher examine data from Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) annual reports for 1995-2014 and Guttmacher Institute reports of abortion rates and volumes for 1973-2014. They compare Planned Parenthood abortions to non-Planned Parenthood abortions (abortions performed by another entity besides Planned Parenthood) over the 20-year period from 1995 to 2014 and find:

  • Non-Planned Parenthood abortions reflected the national trend, decreasing by more than 50 percent.
  • Planned Parenthood abortions, by contrast, increased 142 percent.
  • Planned Parenthood’s share of the U.S. abortion market increased from 10 percent to 35 percent.
  • More than three million excess abortions, or 12.5 percent of the total number of abortions, would have been averted between 1995 and 2014 if Planned Parenthood trends had been identical to non-Planned Parenthood trends.

Supply-induced demand refers to a shift in demand for a service created by those who provide the service. It may occur in health care settings when patients are not fully informed, when there is a financial incentive for the supplier, or both.

“Contrary to their public protestations that abortion is a minimal part of their business model, the data strongly suggest that Planned Parenthood has actively propped up a national abortion rate that has otherwise seen large declines, to their obvious financial benefit,” said lead author Dr. James Studnicki. “More than three million abortions that might have been avoided can be attributed to Planned Parenthood’s intervention in the abortion market.”

CLI President Chuck Donovan added, “This study shows beyond doubt that Planned Parenthood’s commanding market share of U.S. abortions is no accident. Policymakers are fully justified in taking this fact into account as they decide how to allocate public money.”

Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion business, performing 321,384 abortions in 2016 and more than 1.6 million abortions over the past five years, according to annual reports (view fact sheet). Previous CLI research has found that Planned Parenthood controls more than 35 percent of the national market for abortions and is not a significant provider of medical care in the United States.

Susan B. Anthony List and its partner super PAC, Women Speak Out spent more than $18 million in the 2016 election cycle, knocking on more than 1.1 million doors in battleground states to defeat Hillary Clinton and maintain a pro-life Senate. SBA List is dedicated to pursuing policies and electing candidates who will reduce and ultimately end abortion. To that end, the SBA List emphasizes the education, promotion, mobilization, and election of pro-life women.  The SBA List is a network of more than 630,000 pro-life Americans nationwide. 

Charlotte Lozier Institute was launched in 2011 as the education and research arm of Susan B. Anthony List. CLI is a hub for research and public policy analysis on some of the most pressing issues facing the United States and nations around the world. The Institute is named for a feminist physician known for her commitment to the sanctity of human life and equal career and educational opportunities for women.


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