FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Amy R. Brenna
New York, NY, July 31, 2018 – The Door submitted federal comments today urging the US Department of Health and Human Services to withdraw a proposed rule that would undermine Title X (ten), the nation’s program for affordable birth control and family planning care. If adopted, this rule would impose numerous challenges on highly qualified providers across New York that deliver essential care to 350,000 of New Yorkers.
The proposed rule would effectively require providers to withhold information from patients, even upon a patient’s request. For those providers who continue to offer neutral, factual information including nondirective counseling on all pregnancy options and referral, it would impose onerous physical separation requirements on top of existing financial separation requirements. The proposed rule also contradicts the long-held health care tenet that client values should guide clinical care, threatening patient confidentiality in the name of family participation. Moreover, the rule seeks to apply new, unnecessary and costly requirements that are unsupported by evidence, which would inevitably shift resources away from the care delivery upon which so many individuals and communities rely.
“Pressuring providers to disregard medical guidelines could push long-standing expert providers out of the program, which could domino into less health care access and a corresponding decline in health outcomes. The US Department of Health and Human Services should not be advancing policies that will lead to increased rates of unintended pregnancies, unsafe abortions, STDs, HIV infections, cervical cancer, and breast cancer diagnoses,” said Julie Shapiro, Executive Director, The Door.
“These proposed changes undermine the mission of Title X to increase access to family planning and sexual health care services, including the contraceptive methods of a patient’s choice,” wrote The Door in its comments, which are available here.
As a matter of public health, Congress enacted the Title X program nearly 50 years ago to ensure all people had access to high-quality, comprehensive contraceptive services and preventive care, including modern methods of birth control. In 2010, services provided at Title X-funded health centers across New York saved the state and the federal government over $6.5 million in 2010 and prevented 59,200 unintended pregnancies in 2015.
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About The Door
Since 1972, The Door has helped disconnected youth ages 12-24 in New York City gain the tools they need to become successful, in school, work and in life. The Door offers a vast network of effective programs, including health care and health education at its adolescent health center; nutritious meals; mental health counseling and crisis assistance; legal services; tutoring and homework help; High School Equivalency courses and college prep; career development programs and job placement at our main location and also at our Bronx Youth Center; help for runaway and homeless youth and two supportive housing complexes; leadership training; and vibrant arts, sports and recreational activities – all free of charge and under one roof. The Door’s emphasis on a young person’s strengths, combined with a focus on reliable, demonstrative outcomes, has made it a model for similar organizations locally, nationally and internationally. The Door is partnered with leading New York City organizations University Settlement and Broome Street Academy charter high school; together they assist more than 40,000 New Yorkers every year. Learn more at www.door.org.