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Report Details The Effects Of Women's Healthcare Cuts On Latinas In South Texas

Ryan Poppe
TPR News
Pro-choice rally outside the capitol on the night of July 1, 2013.

A group documenting the lives of women in the Rio Grande Valley has released a new human rights report that shows how funding cuts in 2011 and Texas’ new abortion bill have affected the lives of Latina women living in South Texas.

The Center for Reproductive Rights released the report in conjunction with the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health. Jessica González-Rojas is the executive director for the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health and said the name of the program that spotlights these effects is called Nuestro Texas.

"The report documents many of the stories and the impacts and cuts that have happened in their communities," Gonzalez-Rojas said. "So very personal stories about having to cross the border into Mexico to get care because its not available in their community. When clinics close in their communities they are essentially barred from care."

That affects women like Brownsville grandmother Adriana, who became the sole caretaker of her grandson when she was diagnosed with ovarian cysts.

Adriana (translation): "About two-year's back, all of sudden I had a hemorrhage, I lost a lot of blood. I didn’t have enough money to get it checked out in the United States."

According to her story online, Adriana traveled to Mexico to have the procedure to remove and biopsy the cysts that were later to be found to be malignant.

According to the report, Latinas are six times more likely to be diagnosed with cervical cancer. The group recommends expanding primary care providers that offer women’s health care services, to repeal a state rule that does away with federal funding and to expand Medicaid services.

Ryan started his radio career in 2002 working for Austin’s News Radio KLBJ-AM as a show producer for the station's organic gardening shows. This slowly evolved into a role as the morning show producer and later as the group’s executive producer.