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PPSD's Nicole Ruff writes health care reform LTE "Women's health care must improve too"

PPSD's own, Nicole Ruff had her letter to the editor published in todays Chico Enterprise Record.  Below, ar the contents of the letter.

Published: | Updated: 08.31.09

Our nation is in economic crisis.

Thousands of people across our country are still losing their jobs and health insurance on a daily basis.

But what happens when people in our community don't have health insurance and are facing a medical emergency or need to see a physician?

This may surprise you, but many are turning to local community health centers to receive essential care. In fact, community health centers, like Planned Parenthood, often serve as an entry point for health care needs.

For example, one in four women who receive contraceptive care does so at a women's health center. One in six women who obtain a Pap test or pelvic exam does so at a women's health center, as do one-third of women who receive counseling, testing or treatment for a sexually transmitted disease or HIV.

The numbers are growing: A recent survey showed that of 2,050 clients who filled out a Parenthood: Shasta-Diablo survey, 70 percent had lost their job, had hours cut, and/or lost health insurance within the last year.

The basic care that community health centers provide is essential to give women the tools they need to protect and support families, particularly during difficult economic times.

It's so important that community health centers are included in health care reform. Under health care reform, women must have access to reproductive health care and their women's health provider. Women should not be worse off after health care reform than they are today.

Nicole Ruff, Chico

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