Cancer Foundation Reacts To Backlash

The fallout continued today from the divorce between women's health groups Planned Parenthood and Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation. The breast cancer charity announced earlier this week it would stop funding breast screening programs at affiliates of the even huger reproductive health organization.

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MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Now, a quick update on a story we brought you yesterday about a bitter split between Planned Parenthood and Susan G. Komen for the Cure. The breast cancer charity announced it would stop funding breast screening programs at Planned Parenthood.

NPR's Julie Rovner reports that Komen officials spent today trying to explain their decision.

JULIE ROVNER, BYLINE: The $680,000 that Komen's been giving to Planned Parenthood represents only about one percent of Komen's community grant budget and even less of Planned Parenthood's annual budget, which tops a billion dollars. But Komen's decision, which it originally said came because Planned Parenthood is under investigation by Republicans in Congress, sparked outrage from backers and a flood of donations. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, alone, pledged up to $250,000.

In a conference call with reporters, Komen's CEO, Nancy Brinker, said the group's decision has been, quote, "grossly mischaracterized" and had less to do with Planned Parenthood being investigated than with its not having mammography machines. She also said three Planned Parenthood clinics in Colorado, California and Texas will continue to be funded because they provide the only breast cancer screening services in their area.

Julie Rovner, NPR News.

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