Washington, D.C. – The Department of Health and Human Services has released a final regulation that will significantly limit the health care available to patients under Title X of the Public Health Service Act (Title X). Leading women's health care provider groups, medical organizations, and physician leaders representing more than 4.3 million health care providers are alarmed by the new regulation which disregards the expertise of the medical and scientific community and evidence-based standards.
"As the only federal program exclusively dedicated to providing low-income patients, including adolescents, with access to family planning and preventive health services and information, Title X plays a vital role in the fabric of America's family planning safety net. The final regulation is the latest of numerous recent decisions—from rolling back insurance coverage for contraceptives to attempting to eliminate funding for evidence-based teen pregnancy prevention programs—that unravel the threads of this safety net. Together, these decisions compound, leaving women and families with increasingly fewer options for obtaining medically accurate, affordable, and timely access to contraception and preventive care.
"The new regulation weakens existing standards requiring that family planning programs funded through Title X offer a range of evidence-based contraception options. It also conditions federal funding for family planning services on a requirement that providers omit certain information in counseling patients and seeks to exclude qualified providers from Title X.
"This regulation will do indelible harm to the health of Americans and to the relationship between patients and their providers. By forcing providers to omit critical information about health care and resources available, the final regulation directly undermines patients' confidence in their care.
"There is no room for politics in the exam room. For the health of the American people, every individual must have access to comprehensive, affordable care in a safe and timely fashion, just as every provider must be able to deliver medically accurate information and care. The administration should retract this regulation and consider the record volume of comments from the medical, scientific, and patient advocacy communities. Family planning policy should be driven by facts, evidence, and necessity, not politics and ideology."
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) is the nation's leading group of physicians providing health care for women. As a private, voluntary, nonprofit membership organization of more than 58,000 members, ACOG strongly advocates for quality health care for women, maintains the highest standards of clinical practice and continuing education of its members, promotes patient education, and increases awareness among its members and the public of the changing issues facing women's health care. www.acog.org
The American Academy of Pediatrics
The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 67,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, www.aap.org and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds.
The American College of Nurse-Midwives
The American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) is the professional association that represents certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs) in the United States. With roots dating to 1929, ACNM sets the standard for excellence in midwifery education and practice in the United States and strengthens the capacity of midwives in developing countries. ACNM's members are primary care providers for women throughout the lifespan, with a special emphasis on pregnancy, childbirth, and gynecologic and reproductive health. Visit www.midwife.org to learn more or follow ACNM on Twitter or Facebook.
The American College of Osteopathic Obstetricians and Gynecologists
Founded in 1934, the American College of Osteopathic Obstetricians and Gynecologists is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization committed to excellence in women's health. The purpose of the ACOOG is to educate and support osteopathic physicians to improve the quality of life for women by promoting programs that are innovative, visionary, inclusive, and socially relevant. The ACOOG is likewise committed to being the premier leader in the physical, emotional, and spiritual health of women.
The American College of Physicians
The American College of Physicians is the largest medical specialty organization in the United States with members in more than 145 countries worldwide. ACP membership includes 154,000 internal medicine physicians (internists), related subspecialists, and medical students. Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment, and compassionate care of adults across the spectrum from health to complex illness. Follow ACP on Twitter and Facebook.
The American Nurses Association
The American Nurses Association (ANA) is the premier organization representing the interests of the nation's 4 million registered nurses. ANA advances the nursing profession by fostering high standards of nursing practice, promoting a safe and ethical work environment, bolstering the health and wellness of nurses, and advocating on health care issues that affect nurses and the public. ANA is at the forefront of improving the quality of health care for all. For more information, visit www.nursingworld.org.
The American Psychiatric Association
The American Psychiatric Association, founded in 1844, is the oldest medical association in the country. The APA is also the largest psychiatric association in the world with more than 38,500 physician members specializing in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention and research of mental illnesses. APA's vision is to ensure access to quality psychiatric diagnosis and treatment. For more information please visit www.psychiatry.org.
The American Society for Reproductive Medicine
ASRM is a multidisciplinary organization dedicated to the advancement of the science and practice of reproductive medicine. The Society accomplishes its mission through the pursuit of excellence in education and research and through advocacy on behalf of patients, physicians, and affiliated health care providers. The Society is committed to facilitating and sponsoring educational activities for the lay public and continuing medical education activities for professionals who are engaged in the practice of and research in reproductive medicine. www.asrm.org
The American Urogynecologic Society
The American Urogynecologic Society (AUGS) is the premier non-profit organization representing professionals dedicated to treating female pelvic floor disorders. Founded in 1979, AUGS represents more than 1,900 members, including practicing physicians, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, nurses and health care professionals, and researchers from many disciplines. For members and constituents, AUGS is the primary source of clinical and scientific information and education in Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (FPMRS).
The Association for Physician Assistants in Obstetrics and Gynecology
The Association for Physician Assistants in Obstetrics and Gynecology (APAOG) is the only professional association devoted exclusively to PAs practicing in women's health. Established in 1991, APAOG is the collective voice for professionals working to improve the health care of women. APAOG is a voluntary, nonprofit organization committed to improving women's health through advocating for patient autonomy through education and collaborative care, promoting clinical and academic excellence for APAOG members, and to assist and support PA's and the healthcare team by delivering the highest quality women's healthcare services. www.apaog.org
The Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses
Since 1969, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) has been the foremost authority promoting the health of women and newborns and strengthening the nursing profession through the delivery of superior advocacy, research, education, and other professional and clinical resources. AWHONN represents the interests of 350,000 registered nurses working in women's health, obstetric, and neonatal nursing across the United States. Learn more about AWHONN at www.awhonn.org.
The North American Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology
The North American Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology (NASPAG), founded in 1986, is dedicated to providing multidisciplinary leadership in education, research and gynecologic care to improve the reproductive health of youth. Its focus is to serve and be recognized as the lead provider in PAG education, research and clinical care, conduct and encourage multidisciplinary and inter-professional programs of medical education and research in the field of PAG, and advocate for the reproductive well-being of children and adolescents and the provision of unrestricted, unbiased and evidence based practice of PAG. Its official journal, Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology, had its first volume published in 1987 and it continues to cover the spectrum of basic science and clinical research in the subspecialty area, addressing gynecological related problems from birth through early twenties. The Society continues to grow in membership as it serves to inform, educate and advance the quality of care for young gynecological patients both nationally and internationally.
The National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women's Health
The National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women's Health (NPWH) is a nonprofit, professional membership association representing more than 8,000 Women's Health Nurse Practitioners (WHNPs). Advanced practice registered nurses and other healthcare providers rely on NPWH for resources and education that improve women's health and wellness through evidence-based practice. NPWH pioneers policies to address gender disparities and forges strategic partnerships that advance health equity and holistic models of care. For more information, visit www.npwh.org
The Nurses for Sexual and Reproductive Health
NSRH is a national grassroots organization dedicated to providing students, nurses and midwives with education and resources to become skilled care providers and social change agents in sexual and reproductive health and justice. For more information visit http://nsrh.org/.
The Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine
Founded in 1968, the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine is a multidisciplinary organization of over 1,200 members committed to improving the physical and psychosocial health and well-being of all adolescents and young adults through advocacy, clinical care, health promotion, health service delivery, professional development and research.
The Society for Academic Specialists in General Obstetrics and Gynecology
The Society for Academic Specialists in General Obstetrics and Gynecology seeks to enhance women's health by supporting academic generalist physicians in all phases of their careers. Our goal is to support education and scholarship, while fostering excellence in research.
The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine
The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM) is a non-profit, membership organization based in Washington, DC. With more than 3,500 physicians, scientists and women's health professionals around the world, the Society supports the clinical practice of maternal-fetal medicine by providing education, promoting research and engaging in advocacy to optimize the health of high-risk pregnant women and their babies. SMFM hosts an annual scientific meeting in which new ideas and research related to high-risk pregnancies are unveiled and discussed. For more information, visit www.smfm.org.
The Society of Family Planning
The Society of Family Planning (SFP) strives for just and equitable abortion and contraception, which is informed by science. We believe science is an essential, though under-utilized tool for improving the delivery of, and access to, evidence-based abortion and contraception care and for aligning policy and practice with the best available evidence.
The Society of Gynecologic Oncology
The Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) is the premier medical specialty society for health care professionals trained in the comprehensive management of gynecologic cancers. As a 501(c)(6) organization, the SGO contributes to the advancement of women's cancer care by encouraging research, providing education, raising standards of practice, advocating for patients and members and collaborating with other domestic and international organizations.