The New Hampshire House approved Thursday a state budget that includes increased general family planning dollars to cover the loss of the federal Title X family planning program in New Hampshire. Included in the House budget is a contingency amendment stating that if the Title X ruling does not go into effect, the funds will not be allocated to agencies. Planned Parenthood released the following statement applauding the House’s vote to protect New Hampshire's Family Planning Program:
Statement from Kayla Montgomery, Director of Advocacy and Organizing for Planned Parenthood of Northern New England, NH/Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund:
“Planned Parenthood applauds the New Hampshire House for approving a budget that protects essential health care for thousands of Granite Staters. The budget passed by the House today reflects a long bipartisan history of lawmakers supporting New Hampshire’s family planning program. We are pleased that a majority of representatives understood that an erosion of the family planning program of such magnitude will have negative consequences on public health outcomes. We urge the New Hampshire Senate and Governor Sununu to support this protection of the family planning program so that Title X patients can continue to access essential health care.”
On May 3, the Trump Administration’s domestic gag rule will go into effect, dismantling the Title X network in New Hampshire, including for the state’s five Planned Parenthood of Northern New England health centers. Health care will be put at risk for more than 16,000 patients who rely on this program to access essential services, including birth control, STD testing and treatment, and cancer screenings. The additional funding will be used to cover the loss of the federal Title X program in New Hampshire in order for patients to maintain continuity of care.
The approved budget also includes a restoration of the state-supported STD/HIV prevention program at $700,000 over the biennium. This program was eliminated in the FY 2012-13 budget. In the following years New Hampshire has seen a dramatic increase in sexually transmitted diseases: gonorrhea and syphilis are both in outbreak status, with chlamydia having seen a dramatic increase in the last five years. Between 2013-2017, NH saw a 250 percent increase in cases of gonorrhea alone. Last year PPNNE provided over 26,000 STD tests.