Reproductive health is under threat in the U.S., and women will pay the price.
Under a new policy by the Trump administration, clinics associated with the Title X family planning program, which enables poor women to afford birth control, cancer screenings and STD testing, are barred from receiving government funding (Title X money) if they provide abortions. Even if they receive funding from a separate source, clinics receiving funding from Title X would be prohibited from referring patients for an abortion at different institutions.
Under this gag rule, staff members would be forced to treat abortion as though it were illegal —an unspoken medical option. According to the federal Office of Population Affairs, in 2017 alone, Title X served more than four million women. The Guttmacher Institute estimates that the federal government saves more than $7 for every dollar that it spends on family planning.
This isn’t just about abortion now. This is about how women, especially socioeconomically disadvantaged individuals, will face even more barriers to crucial healthcare.
Banning funding to organizations that provide abortion referrals/services as part of their family planning care ensures that women benefiting from other forms of birth control, treatments, screenings and other medical examinations — many of which do not relate to abortion — would suffer from a dramatic reduction in their quality of life.