Access to Family Planning Services
Widespread use of birth control continues to be a critical component of basic preventive health care for women and has been the driving force in reducing national rates of unintended pregnancies, STD infections, and abortions.
Womens Health and the Affordable Care Act (ACA)
The Affordable Care Act, health insurance reform legislation passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama, helps make prevention affordable and accessible by requiring health plans to cover preventative services and eliminating cost-sharing for those services. Preventative services that strong scientific evidence of health benefits must be covered, and plans can no longer charge a copayment, coinsurance or deductable for these services when they’re delivered by a network provider. For more information about the Affordable Care Act’s womens’ preventative services provisions, you can click here.
The National Family Planning Program, created in 1970 as Title X of the Public Health Services Act, provides grants to public and private non-profit agencies to provide voluntary family planning services for individuals who are otherwise ineligible for medical services. Title X serves over five million low-income women at 4,500 clinics nationwide, providing high-quality contraceptive services and other preventive health care services including: contraceptive and infertility services, gynecological care, screening for STDs, breast and cervical cancers, reproductive health counseling, education and referrals.
Title X is the only federal program devoted solely to family planning and related preventive health services, and it is one of the nation’s best and most cost-effective public health success stories: for every public dollar invested in family planning services, three dollars are saved in Medicaid costs for pregnancy and newborn care alone. In 2011 alone, Title X-funded clinics served over 5 million Americans, primarily low-income women and adolescents.
Rep. Eshoo supports a woman’s legal right to opt for, or against, an abortion. The decision is private. It’s a matter of faith and it’s a matter of conscience, and our Constitution recognizes this.