Planned Parenthood closure affects students

Samantha Sigler

Samantha Sigler/Associate editor

Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette closed its McMinnville office located at 130 N.W. Sixth St. after operating for nearly seven years.

After the organization conducted its annual evaluation of Planned Parenthood affiliates, the agency decided the McMinnville center was not serving as many people as they had hoped, and they could no longer justify keeping the center open.

“The health care landscape is an ever-changing world,” said Liz Delapoer, director of marketing and communications at Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette. “We are constantly looking at our operations across state and looking at what makes sense to meet the needs of families who don’t have access to health care.”

The McMinnville clinic offered contraception counseling and prescription, cancer screening, HIV and VD testing, morning after pill prescription, pregnancy testing and administration of annual exams for women and vasectomies for men.

“For those students who were using Planned Parenthood as their source of reproductive health care, I think it will be a source of inconvenience,” said Dawn Graff-Haight, professor of health education. “Sometimes that inconvenience is the difference between being protected and not being protected, which is why I advocate for condoms.”

For students and community members who were using the Planned Parenthood clinic for reproductive health care, Delapoer recommends using one of their other locations, with the closest ones being in either in Salem or Beaverton.

“We have a whole list of referral sources and community partners that can help provide care,” Delapoer said.

For more information on these referral sources, people can call 1-888-576-7526 with any questions they may have, request a copy of health chart or get help for other services they may need.

Local clinics that students can turn to for health care include the Yamhill County Health Department on Fourth and Ford in downtown McMinnville, as well as Linfield’s Student Health, Wellness and Counseling center.

“Linfield Student Health, Wellness and Counseling Center offers STI testing, pregnancy testing, well woman exams, including Pap smears when appropriate,” said Patricia Haddeland in an email, director of the Student Health, Wellness and Counseling center. “Condoms are available in both the waiting room of the [Student Health, Wellness and Counseling center] and in the Wellness Programs office, Walker Hall 102. Morning after pill is now over the counter and any student aged 18 or older does not need a prescription to purchase this medication. It is purchased at the pharmacy counter.”

While the student health center is not able to provide prescriptions on site, they are able to write prescriptions for students who need medication to fill at a local pharmacy.

Samantha Sigler can be reached at [email protected]