West Palm Beach — Planned Parenthood of South Florida and the Treasure Coast is celebrating National Women’s Health Week, May 10-16, 2009, by encouraging women to visit their health care provider for regular checkups and preventive screenings.
A recent survey conducted for The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists found that women are delaying their annual exams as a result of the economic downturn.
Roughly 16.7 million women are uninsured, and thus likely to postpone care and delay or forgo important preventive care such as cancer screenings, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
“The health care crisis is disproportionately affecting women, particularly women of childbearing age, who already pay 68 percent more in out-of-pocket costs than men,” said Lillian A. Tamayo, President/CEO of Planned Parenthood of South Florida and the Treasure Coast. “Planned Parenthood is committed to providing affordable access to basic health care, such as breast and cervical cancer screenings and sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing.”
The best way for women to protect their reproductive health is through preventive screenings. Sexually transmitted infections (STI) continue to pose a serious public health threat in this country, particularly to young women who are more vulnerable to infection than men due to biological factors. Without detection and treatment, STIs can lead to serious short- and long-term health consequences, including infertility.
Regular cancer screenings can identify precancerous or abnormal cells and treat them before cervical cancer develops. Routine administration of Pap screening has led to increased detection of pre-invasive lesions of the cervix and decreased mortality rates.
National Women’s Health Week, coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health, empowers women to make their health a top priority.
As the nation’s most trusted provider of reproductive health care services, more than three million clients annually depend on Planned Parenthood for quality, affordable health care.
The mission of Planned Parenthood of South Florida and the Treasure Coast is to provide comprehensive sexual health care through the provision of clinical services, education and advocacy. We do so by understanding and responding to the needs of those seeking our services, and by protecting and respecting the essential privacy rights, dignity and culture of each individual.
May 11, 2009