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Organization Lifts Up Importance of Birth Control As It Comes Under Attack

NEW YORK, NY —  Planned Parenthood Federation of America is proud to participate in “Thanks, Birth Control” Day, an opportunity to highlight the many ways in which birth control dramatically improves the lives and opportunities of women and families. There’s a lot to celebrate about birth control: the ability to plan, prevent, and space pregnancies is directly linked to benefits for women, men, children, and society, including more educational and economic opportunities, healthier babies, and more stable families. Millions of people have used birth control to plan their families, finish their education, and pursue their dreams.

While birth control has made tremendous advancements in people’s health and lives, the right to access birth control is also coming under threat in a way we haven’t seen in decades. Since coming into office in January, the Trump administration has eliminated the guarantee that insurance plans cover birth control, which today benefits more than 62 million women and stacked the Department of Health and Human Services with officials who oppose the use of birth control; additionally, a leaked White House Domestic Policy Council memo revealed an agenda to further roll back access to the full range of contraceptive methods.

Nearly nine in 10 women of reproductive age will use contraception at some point in their lives for a variety of reasons. In fact, 58 percent of all women who use the pill rely on it, at least in part, for something other than pregnancy prevention, including endometriosis, polycystic ovarian syndrome (which is prevalent among women of color), fibroids, and menstrual regulation. The United States is seeing the lowest rate of unintended pregnancy in 30 years and a historic low of pregnancy among teens because of expanded access to birth control and sex education. Globally, expanding access to contraceptives contributed to a 44 percent reduction in maternal mortality between 1990 and 2015.

“Today, we say ‘Thanks, Birth Control!’ for everything it continues to make possible for women and families,” said Dr. Raegan McDonald-Mosley, chief medical officer of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. “Birth control is essential health care. It’s a normal part of women’s lives and should not be up for debate. Politicians should stop trying to restrict women’s access to birth control. This administration poses the biggest threat to birth control access since it became legal more than 50 years ago.”

Today, Planned Parenthood patients, supporters, and affiliates throughout the nation are also partnering with Center for American Progress for a #HandsOffMyBC National Day of Action as part of the Fight for Birth Control campaign. Rallies will be held at HHS offices in Atlanta, Dallas, Kansas City, and outside of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. with a unified and non-negotiable message: hands off my birth control.

The #Fight4BirthControl campaign includes tools and resources to help people from all walks of life — from the boardroom to the breakroom — join the fight to protect access to birth control. Learn more at FightforBirthControl.org.

“As the nation’s leading women’s health care provider and advocate, Planned Parenthood is an expert on birth control — and we’re proud to provide the full range of contraceptive options along with information and education to help people make informed decisions about which birth control method is best for them,” Dr. McDonald-Mosley said.

Planned Parenthood works every day to ensure that people all over the country have access to birth control through high-quality delivery of birth control information and services, as well as sex education, clinical research, public policy advocacy and litigation, and new innovations in online health services and mobile apps. Planned Parenthood health centers serve 41 percent of contraceptive patients accessing care through the nation’s family planning program, and provide family planning counseling and contraception to nearly two million patients each year.

Planned Parenthood is revolutionizing the way people access sexual and reproductive health care and information through innovative uses of technology designed to reach people who are most in need:

  • For people who want to know about their birth control options, PlannedParenthood.org is a good place to start. There’s a quiz that can help you find out which methods are best for you.

  • Last year, Planned Parenthood released Spot On, a free birth control and period tracker app that helps people track and predict their periods, understand their menstrual cycle, and manage their birth control, as well as provide guidance, tips, and fun facts from Planned Parenthood experts.

  • The Planned Parenthood Care™ app (available in Minnesota, Washington, Hawaii, Alaska, and Idaho) allows people to talk to a Planned Parenthood provider online and face to face through a secure video consultation system to receive birth control or an STD test kit and treatment, if necessary, in the mail.

  • The Planned Parenthood Direct™ app allows people in California to receive UTI treatment and birth control prescriptions through their mobile phone.

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Planned Parenthood is one of the nation’s leading providers and advocates of high-quality, affordable health care for women, men, and young people, as well as the nation’s largest provider of sex education. With more than 600 health centers across the country, Planned Parenthood organizations serve all patients with care and compassion, with respect and without judgment. Through health centers, programs in schools and communities, and online resources, Planned Parenthood is a trusted source of reliable health information that allows people to make informed health decisions. We do all this because we care passionately about helping people lead healthier lives.