The National Family Planning Program, also know as Title X (ten) of the Public Health Service Act, was established in 1970 to ensure that no American woman or man would be denied access to family planning assistance because of their economic condition. For more than three decades, Title X has been an integral component of our nation’s public health care system, providing high quality family planning services and other preventive health care to low-income or uninsured individuals who may otherwise lack access to health care.
Maternal and Family Health Services administers the program through a network of direct and contract service providers. In addition to direct sites, the network system includes hospitals, Planned Parenthood affiliates, community health centers and physician groups.
The program, funded through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is an integral component of the nation’s public health system. Every dollar spent on the program saves $3 in pregnancy-related and infant care costs to Medicaid.
Who is eligible for the Family Planning Program?
- Adolescents under 18 years of age.
- Adults with a declared family income below 100% of the Federal Poverty Index.
- Adults whose declared income is above 100% of the Federal Poverty Index will be charged a fee based upon a schedule of discounts for family income between 101% and 250% of the Federal Poverty Index.
- Individuals covered by Medical Assistance, including Medicaid Managed Care Plans are eligible for services at a family planning clinic.
Anyone who voluntarily requests services is eligible for Family Planning services. A sliding-fee scale allows us to tailor costs to your individual needs, ensuring that no one will ever be turned away for inability to pay. Many health insurance plans are accepted, but plan acceptance varies by clinic location.
Benefits of Family Planning
- Family Planning is an investment in basic preventative health care and social responsibility.
- Family Planning services lowers the rates of sexually transmitted diseases by enabling couples to receive counseling, screening services and treatment.
- Family Planning helps prevent unplanned pregnancies through education about birth control methods and access to contraceptives.
- Family Planning allows couples to determine family size and voluntarily space children.
What do I expect at the first visit?
At your first family planning visit, a professional will explain the health care services available and what will be involved during your initial visit. They will ask for information about your medical history and explain any laboratory tests that will be done.
Your counselor will talk to you about abstinence and safer sex. They will explain the different methods of birth control, including how each method is used, how it prevents pregnancy, how well it works, and what side effects might occur. They will help you to select a birth control method that suits your needs and provide you with any supplies you need.
After your counseling, a physician or nurse practitioner will do your medical examination. Your exam will include: a review of your health history; a check of your heart, lungs, thyroid, and abdomen; they will check for any problems and possibly test for STDs. Women will also receive: a breast exam; instruction about breast self-examination; a pelvic exam and if you neeed one, a Pap test (a screening test for cervical cancer).
Ongoing routine visits will be scheduled according to your needs and the method of birth control you have chosen. A gynecological exam should be scheduled on a yearly basis to ensure continued good health.
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