Texas Study Further Reveals Damage of Excluding Planned Parenthood from Women’s Health Programs

For Immediate Release

Texas Study Further Reveals Damage of Excluding Planned Parenthood from Women’s Health Programs

TEXAS - A study published on Wednesday reveals that following Planned Parenthood’s exclusion from the Texas Women’s Health Program, fewer low-income women were able to access highly effective reversible contraceptives and the number of Medicaid births increased.

The study, from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP), found that in areas with a Planned Parenthood, there was a decrease in provision of contraceptive injections, implants and intrauterine devices (IUDs) in the two years after the state excluded the qualified provider from the Women’s Health Program. The study concludes that the increased rate of childbirths covered by Medicaid among people who relied on injectable contraceptives likely stems from an increase in unintended pregnancies.

“Low-income Texans are suffering from the ongoing politically-motivated attacks on reproductive health care.” Heather Busby, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Texas, said. “People have lost access to preventative health care, including birth control, and have lost access to their trusted health care provider. Every person should have access to full-spectrum health care, regardless of their income.”

The TxPEP research is based on Medicaid claims from January 2011 through December 2014. After Planned Parenthood was excluded from the program, the claims for IUDs and implants decreased by 35.5 percent and claims for injectable contraceptives decreased by 31.1 percent, according to the study.

The previous state Medicaid women’s health program was 90 percent funded by the federal government, but the federal government was forced to pull their funding when the Texas Legislature passed a measure excluding qualified providers – Planned Parenthood - from the program in 2011.  The state-funded Texas Women’s Health Program that replaced the Medicaid program was instated in 2013, and excludes clinics affiliated with an abortion provider. The Texas Legislature also cut family planning funding by 66 percent in 2011, resulting in the closure of 82 family planning clinics across Texas.

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NARAL Pro-Choice America and its network of state affiliates are dedicated to protecting and expanding reproductive freedom for all Americans. NARAL works to guarantee that every woman has the right to make personal decisions regarding the full range of reproductive choices, including preventing unintended pregnancy, bearing healthy children, and choosing legal abortion. In recognition of its work defending our constitutional right to choose, Fortune Magazine described NARAL as "one of the top 10 advocacy groups in America."

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