Reproductive Health Issues

How Can Title X Affect Reproductive Health?

March 26, 2018

Title X, pronounced”Title 10″, is a national law that’s designed to finance family planning programs and associated preventative health plans for low-income people. Title X offers free or low-cost reproductive health services to people who are low-income and/or uninsured.

What Is Title X?

First launched in 1970, under the Nixon administration, Title X funds reproductive health services such as:

  • Family planning
  • Contraception
  • Education and counselling
  • Breast and pelvic examinations
  • Cervical cancer, breast cancer, and colorectal cancer screenings
  • STD screening, treatment, and prevention
  • HIV education and prevention
  • Pregnancy testing and counseling
  • Infertility treatment
  • Research
  • Training

Title X funding these services by providing grants to both public and private organizations, including neighborhood health clinics.

Is Title X Planned Parenthood?

Although some people equate Title X clinics and Planned Parenthood, the contrast isn’t accurate.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, Planned Parenthod only represents 13 percent of Title X clinics. Other types of clinics funded by Title X comprise public health department clinics, federally qualified health clinics, hospital outpatient clinics, and independent clinics.  Nevertheless, the services offered by Planned Parenthood are crucial. In 2015, Planned Parenthood functioned 41 percent of contraceptive clients visiting Title X clinics.

Does Title X Fund Abortion?

Title X explicitly prohibits using its cash to finance abortion as a method of family planning. Title X doesn’t fund abortion, and clinics receiving Title X funding are not allowed to use that money to provide abortions. Title X does finance contraception, which reduces the amount of unintended pregnancies and as such the amount of abortions.

Effect on Reproductive Health

Researchers estimate that publicly funded contraceptive services helped stop 1.9 million unintended pregnancies in 2015 alone. That usually means that access to contraception prevented over 600,000 abortions.

Not all those services were supplied by Title X clinics, but most were. In 2015, over 800,000 unintended pregnancies and 250,000 abortions were prevented by Title X services. Additional estimates suggest that with no Title X providers the adolescent pregnancy rate would have been 44 percent higher and the general unintended pregnancy rate would have increased by a thirdparty.

In addition, research indicates that Title X clinics provide better accessibility to a range of contraceptive measures than non-Title X clinics. By way of example, Title X clinics are more likely to supply services such as intrauterine contraceptives, contraceptive implants. All these long-acting contraceptive steps can enable girls to protect themselves from pregnancy for years at a time. Title X clinics are more likely to provide permanent birth control choices, such as vasectomies.

Vasectomies are not the only service which Title X clinics provide to guys. From 2003 to 2014, 3.8 million men seen Title X clinics, and the ratio of service users who were men increased steadily over time.

By 2014, over 8 percent of visits to Title X clinics were for guys. Men sought a wide selection of care in these clinics including preconception care, infertility treatment, contraception, and STD care.

Changes Over Time

Title X has been originally put in place because scientists and politicians realized that unintended childbearing caused numerous social issues. These issues included a rise in poverty and decreased participation in education and the work force. Title X was made to reduce unintended childbearing as well as to enhance maternal and child health outcomes by providing girls the capacity to choose how and if they desired to have children.

Title X has not remained static because it was first passed into law in 1970. Since then, nearly 300 federal bills have been proposed to alter Title X between 1970 and 2011. Only twenty of these were passed into laws.

Most changes involved limiting access to reproductive healthcare. In particular, changes which have gone into position have placed a lot of restrictions on the provision of abortion services. All these have gone beyond restricting the usage of funds for abortion. There also have been bills that have supported the promotion of scientifically unsupported abstinence-only education and preventing providers from discussing abortion (although they were not permitted to give it).

A Word From Verywell

Support for Title X shouldn’t depend on whether people are pro-choice or pro-life. The capital it provides are not used for diplomatic. Instead, funds are used to improve and save lives. They improve individuals’ reproductive health and help them have kids only when and how they want. They also improve overall health by providing preventative health care including cancer screening and blood pressure measurement. In reality, a lot of individuals primarily access health care through Title X.

Research has consistently proven that the Title X program has experienced enormous, positive effects on the wellbeing of low-income and uninsured men and women. Title X funding hasn’t just reduced unintended pregnancies and assisted people prevent STDs. Additionally, it has enhanced the overall health of many young men and women,  reduced the amount of preterm and low birth weight infants, and assisted families have children that they would not otherwise have had the opportunity to conceive.