Trump-Pence Administration Introduces Gag Rule that Will Significantly Impact Patients Who Rely on Title X for Health Care
For Immediate Release: May 24, 2018 (Updated: May 24, 2018, 8:31 p.m.)
Planned Parenthood of Northern New England is the Only Title X Provider in Vermont
News Release – Planned Parenthood of Northern New England
May 24, 2018
Lucy Leriche, Vice President of Vermont Public Policy
Eileen Sullivan, Communications Director
Colchester, VT – On Tuesday, the Trump-Pence administration introduced a nationwide gag rule, marking a radical departure from how health care has operated in the United States until now. The gag rule will:
- Prohibit health centers that get Title X family planning funds from referring patients for safe, legal abortion.
- Impose new restrictions designed to make it impossible for patients to get birth control or preventive care from reproductive health care providers like Planned Parenthood.
- Remove the guarantee that people are getting full and accurate information about their health care from their doctors. Title X law has been clear: health care providers cannot withhold information from patients about pregnancy options. This rule means they can.
In Vermont, Planned Parenthood of Northern New England (PPNNE) is the only Title X provider. PPNNE has 12 health centers in Vermont, and in 2017 served nearly 10,000 patients who rely on Title X for affordable birth control and reproductive health care. Without Title X-funded family planning services in Vermont, unintended adolescent pregnancies would be 139% higher, and unintended pregnancy and abortion would be 127% higher*. (*Source: Guttmacher Institute).
Statement by Meagan Gallagher, CEO and President of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England: “Title X helps low-income patients in Vermont access birth control, cancer screenings, STD testing and treatment, and women's general health exams. For decades, people in Vermont have benefited from affordable reproductive health care through Title X, and the new rule from the Trump administration threatens to take that away. This is the most offensive and dangerous attack on women’s rights in this country. We will continue to fight for our patients’ health and rights to control their own bodies, and to get the high-quality care they need.”
The rule is expected to include a 60-day public comment period once it is posted to the official Federal Register.
The domestic gag rule has never gone into effect in the United States before. The Reagan administration tried to implement this in 1988, but the rule was held up in the courts and later retracted by the Clinton administration in 1993 after intense outcry from the medical community, including the American College of Physicians and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Title X, in place since 1970, is a popular and effective program designed to ensure that everyone, no matter where they live, how much money they make, and whether or not they have health insurance, has access to basic preventive reproductive health care like birth control, cancer screenings, STD testing and treatment, and well-woman exams. It has received bipartisan support from Congress since its inception. Every year it serves more than four million people in the United States.
About Planned Parenthood of Northern New England (PPNNE): PPNNE is the largest reproductive and sexual health care provider in northern New England. In 2016, PPNNE served more than 40,000 women, men, and teens, and provided more than $8.1 million worth of free and discounted health care. www.ppnne.org
About Planned Parenthood of Vermont Action Fund: Planned Parenthood of Vermont Action Fund (PPVTAF) is a nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood of Northern New England. The Action Fund engages in educational activity, including legislative advocacy, and grassroots organizing.