WASHINGTON — Planned Parenthood commends the Senate Appropriations Committee and the leadership of Chairwoman Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Chair Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) for their strong support of critical women’s health programs.
July 12, 2013
In stark contrast to efforts we’ve seen in the House in recent appropriations bills, the Senate FY 2014 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill would increase funding for the Title X Family Planning program to $327 million, consistent with President Obama’s budget. It would also provide $113.2 million for the Teenage Pregnancy Prevention program, reject new funding for ineffective abstinence education, and maintain funding for the Center for Disease Control’s HIV, Viral Hepatitis, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, and TB Prevention programs.
Additionally, the report accompanying the bill includes language highlighting the importance of the Title X program in a reformed health care system, as well as protections intended to ensure that women have access to a wide range of Title X providers in their communities.
“Senator Mikulski, Senator Harkin and the Senate Appropriations Committee have taken a vital step toward strengthening America’s family planning program and our nation’s health care system as a result,” said Planned Parenthood Federation of America President, Cecile Richards. “Title X is a fundamental part of building a women’s health care delivery system that will meet the growing demand for care under the Affordable Care Act. In every state, women and men rely on Title X for basic preventive health care, including contraception, Pap tests, and testing and treatment for STD’s. The best way to prevent unintended pregnancies is to invest in family planning programs like Title X and ensure more women and families have access to reproductive health care.”
The Labor-HHS-Education bill is a critical step forward for women’s health, yet if Congress does not work together to replace sequestration with a balanced approach to deficit reduction, these efforts could be for naught. Planned Parenthood continues to believe that Congress can and should pass deficit reduction proposals that reduce our nation's debt without undermining people's access to basic health care services.