Its code name was “Alaska.” While that may seem like part of the latest spy thriller, it is actually the designation for Planned Parenthood’s newest facility in Southern Illinois, near St. Louis, Missouri. It is the latest example of Planned Parenthood using subterfuge to expand without public interference.

It’s a deeply disturbing trend. Not only is the organization opening more clinics, but it is doing so under the names of shell corporations and each has been dubbed a “mega-clinic.” These locations are being built in Birmingham (AL), Richmond (VA), Charlotte (NC) and now in Fairview Heights, Illinois.

The facility will be 18,000 square-feet and one of the largest abortion clinics in the country. It will be replacing a much smaller office located within the city. According to Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region’s chief medical officer Colleen McNicholas, the facility is meant to help support abortion seekers from Missouri if the state’s last abortion clinic, also Planned Parenthood’s, closes. The facility plans on serving 11,000 patients a year.

In addition to continuing to offer the abortion pill, the new facility will now also offer surgical abortions. That’s a significant change, which could drastically increase the number of abortions and the gestational age in which the child is aborted. The state allows abortion until the point of viability, which is considered between week 24 and week 28 of pregnancy. Planned Parenthood already performs abortions up to about the 20th week of pregnancy in Illinois. This move would potentially double the gestational age of the preborn baby that can be aborted as the abortion pill procedure is only medically recommended up to the 10th week of pregnancy.

McNicholas said the building was done in secret to avoid protests and delays, which have hindered progress at other Planned Parenthood buildings, but the deceptive tactics the abortion business is using should give the public pause. In the United States, abortion may be legal, but families also have the right to know that an abortion facility is being built in their community.

But there is something else that remains deeply disturbing, why is Planned Parenthood building these so-called mega-clinics when abortion numbers across the country are going down? Planned Parenthood is not interested in doing general medical care and has very publicly given up Title X funds. Although there are several potential reasons, I think there is one strong possibility. 

Planned Parenthood is planning on expanding its stake in the abortion business and driving its competitors out of business. It’s the only thing that really makes sense.

Over the years there has been a significant decrease in the number of general health, non-abortion related services that Planned Parenthood provides. For example, since the 1990s cancer preventative services have decreased by about 62% but abortion related services have increased by 143%. The only other area where Planned Parenthood has experienced growth is with STD testing and services, which has increased by a staggering 231%.

When it comes to competitors, every city mentioned above does have at least one other abortion clinic within driving distance. Most are within the same city, and it seems likely that Planned Parenthood wants to continue expanding its abortion services and potentially become the nation’s sole abortion provider.

Obviously, that is supposition, but it is a strong possibility. The previous president Dr. Leana Wen was fired over her desire to focus less on abortion and more on developing the business’ health care services. Regardless of the reasoning, it seems like Planned Parenthood is set on opening up more and more of these mega-clinics throughout the country. The question is, where is the next one going to pop up?

Photo by Paul Sableman