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Obama Administration Preserves Essential Funding for Women’s Health Programs
At a time when women’s health is under attack and our nation is facing severe budget deficits, the Obama administration signaled its support for women’s health by preserving funding for the key program that provides essential health care to women, the Title X Family Planning Program.
The Obama administration’s newly released budget for Fiscal Year 2013 maintains level funding for the Title X Family Planning Program, at $296,838,000.
“In the face of a relentless assault on women’s health, including access to birth control, the Obama administration preserves funding for an essential public health program, the national family planning program,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “We look forward to working with women’s health allies in Congress to build on the president’s request to ensure that the national family planning program is able to meet the growing demand for preventive care, including birth control, cancer screenings, and annual exams.”
Unfortunately, the national family planning program has been a political target by House Republican leaders who want to end access to birth control, and as a result, the program has suffered disproportionate budget cuts. Planned Parenthood remains committed to reversing this trend, and ensuring that the Title X family planning program receives the increases in funding it deserves.
In addition, the president’s budget excludes the DC abortion ban, a policy rider restricting the District of Columbia from deciding whether to use locally raised revenue to help low-income women access safe abortion care. This stance signals that the administration is committed to allowing women access to the full range of reproductive health care.
“Planned Parenthood applauds the Obama administration for supporting the stripping of the DC abortion rider from the federal budget,” said Richards. “That would allow DC, just like every other state, to make its own decisions on how to spend its own tax dollars.”
The Title X national family planning program has provided lifesaving preventive and primary care for low-income women since President Nixon signed it into law in 1970. Health centers funded through Title X save women’s lives by detecting breast and cervical cancer at early stages, by offering testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, screening for high blood pressure, and providing immunizations. These clinics also prevent nearly a million unintended pregnancies every year, thus reducing the need for abortion.
The administration’s 2013 budget also proposed $104,790,000 for the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program, maintaining the same funding level as FY 2012. Planned Parenthood applauds the White House for continuing to make teen pregnancy prevention a priority.
President Obama is also taking important steps to sustain family planning efforts throughout the developing world. The proposed 2013 budget includes $530 million for USAID family planning and reproductive health programs; representing a $6 million increase from FY 2012.
The president’s budget includes $39 million for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), a $4 million increase from last year’s request.