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Bill Prioritizes Family Planning and Prevention of Unintended Pregnancies

WASHINGTON, DC — As the nation’s leading advocate and provider of women’s health care, including reproductive health services, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPPFA) applauds the introduction of the Prevention First Act (S. 21) in the United States Senate on the opening day of the 111th Congress. This much needed legislation will increase access to family planning, improve health care for low-income women and families, and prevent unintended pregnancies.

“Today’s action, on the first day of the new Congress, sends a strong message that strengthening families and improving access to reproductive health care is a a top priority,” said PPFA President Cecile Richards.  “More than 17 million women in the U.S. need publicly funded family planning services, and there is not enough funding to meet the need. The Prevention First Act will help women and couples plan their families and their futures by expanding access to critically needed affordable family planning education and reproductive health care services. Our shared goal must be to reduce unintended pregnancies and ensure that all women, regardless of income, have access to affordable care to lead healthy lives.”

Planned Parenthood knows firsthand that women and men in America need affordable and accessible reproductive health care information and health care services. That's why Planned Parenthood launched a Prevention First initiative aimed at investing in family planning, preventing unintended pregnancy, and reducing the need for abortion. It includes commonsense measures designed to

  • restore affordable birth control for millions of college and low-income women 
  • fully fund Title X, the nation's family planning program 
  • expand access to reproductive health care services for low-income women through Medicaid 
  • protect teens' health through medically accurate comprehensive sex education 
  • require equity in contraceptive insurance coverage 
  • improve awareness about emergency contraception 
  • protect and expand rape survivors' access to emergency contraception in emergency rooms

Planned Parenthood applauds Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) for supporting commonsense legislation that will improve women’s health and introducing the bill in the U.S. Senate. Planned Parenthood also applauds Representatives Louise M. Slaughter (D-NY) and Diana DeGette (D-CO) who will introduce the bill in the U.S. House later this week.

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