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Colleges see big drop in foreign-language enrollment; Kentucky advocates say it's time to bury medical debt; Young Farmers in Michigan hope the new farm bill will include key benefits regarding land access.

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The White House presses for supplemental Ukraine aid. Leaders condemn antisemitic attacks during Gaza ceasefire protests. Despite concerns about the next election, one Arizona legal expert says courts generally side with voters and democracy.

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Congress has iced the Farm Bill, but farmer advocates argue some portions are urgent, the Hoosier State is reaping big rewards from wind and solar, and opponents react to a road through Alaska's Brooks Range, long a dream destination for hunters and anglers.

Planned Parenthood Resuming Abortion Services in Two Arizona Cities

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Friday, December 16, 2011   

PHOENIX - Four months after eliminating abortion services in rural Arizona, Planned Parenthood is expanding its locations in the state where abortions will be performed from three to five.

However, abortion services remain unavailable outside of the state's two largest cities, says Bryan Howard, Planned Parenthood Arizona's president.

"While we continue to work to identify physicians in rural communities to provide abortion care, we have so far been unable to do so. That means rural Arizona women must still travel to metro Phoenix and Tucson and face significant burdens as a result."

A new Arizona law prohibits abortions, even by abortion pill, unless performed by a physician. Planned Parenthood had offered abortion services at 10 of its 13 Arizona locations, including Prescott Valley, Flagstaff and Yuma. Abortions are being resumed in North Phoenix and Chandler.

It's difficult to find physicians to perform abortions in rural areas, Howard says, because of harassment and threats by anti-abortion groups at clinics and private homes.

"For the medical professionals, it's like we do know who could do it. It's who really wants to take that step."

Although overall abortions in the state are returning to levels seen before the new law took effect, Howard says the increased restrictions have reduced the number of rural women coming to Planned Parenthood.

"What we don't know is what happens to the patients who aren't coming to us or to another provider anymore. Are they going out of state? Are they just continuing pregnancies that they are unprepared for? And of course, right now we don't know the answer to that."

Howard emphasizes that all of Planned Parenthood's 13 Arizona locations continue to offer annual exams, cancer screenings and all Food and Drug Administration-approved methods of birth control.



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