Busted: Clinic 554 is a family doctor’s office that provides a wide range of publicly funded services and must charge ONLY for abortions because the government refuses to fund them outside of a hospital.
Long version: Clinic 554 is a family physician’s office. They also happen to provide a range of other health care services that benefit many, often marginalized, people in our community. For example, they care for people living with addiction, the LGBTQ2+ community, people with HIV and Hepatitis C, and provide sexual and reproductive health care such as pap tests, IUDs, and abortions.
Abortion is the only piece of medical care provided at Clinic 554 that is not funded by the government. This is not because Clinic 554 seeks to profit off this care – in fact the clinic often absorbs the cost of a procedure if the patient cannot afford it. They are operating at a deficit yet continue to provide abortions because they care about their patients.
Patients pay out of pocket for abortions at Clinic 554 because the New Brunswick government refuses to pay for abortions provided outside of three designated hospitals in the province. The New Brunswick government continues to argue they “don’t fund private clinics,” yet they fund every piece of health care at Clinic 554, other than abortions. Even the Federal Minister of Health has stated that Clinic 554 is not a private clinic, pointing out that they are already in a billing relationship with the provincial government.
Framing Clinic 554 as a private clinic has long been a tactic used to avoid removing discriminatory and restrictive regulations around abortion.