Planned Parenthood Expands Access to Birth Control in Madison Branch | Government

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Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin is expanding the availability of birth control and other family planning health care services at its Madison branch, as well as a site in Milwaukee, both of which previously provided abortion services.

After the United States Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and that virtually all abortions became illegal statewide, Planned Parenthood worked to ensure continuity of health care services.

The expansion of family planning services at Madison’s Planned Parenthood at 3706 Orin Road means the clinic can provide pregnancy assessment, miscarriage management and abortion navigation services. While the clinic once had full reproductive care, several years ago it switched to offering abortion services only because of demand, said Lisa Boyce, communications coordinator for Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin.

“In Wisconsin, abortion was already so severely restricted (before Roe was overturned),” Boyce said. “We only had three Planned Parenthood facilities providing abortion care, so once we saw that level of demand, it forced us to provide abortion care exclusively. All of these family planning services have been set aside in Madison. »

With abortion no longer available, the location offers the same services as 22 others across the state.

“With abortion outlawed in Wisconsin, we need to do everything we can to improve access to birth control information and methods so women can plan their pregnancies,” Boyce said. “We also know that the pandemic has disrupted people’s access to reproductive health care and that more than 300,000 women need affordable contraception.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted access to birth control and 30% of Wisconsin residents have faced delays or barriers to accessing it, a new study from the Guttmacher Institutea reproductive health research and policy organization, found.

Another analysis from non-profit organization Power to Decide shows that more than 320,000 women living at or below the poverty line in Wisconsin live in contraceptive deserts, without “reasonable access to a full-line health center contraceptive methods”.

“It is more important than ever that people have access to birth control as well as the full range of sexual and reproductive health care services,” said Amy Doczy, vice president of patient services for PPWI, in a statement.

Planned Parenthood and other nonprofit organizations continue to help people obtain abortion care by referring them to outside abortion clinics, as well as any other resources needed, such as financial assistance, the organization transportation services, etc.

PPWI also offers a range of reproductive health care services for women and men, including breast and cervical cancer screening, birth control, STD screening and treatment, screening and HIV education, as well as testicular examinations and postpartum care.

Boyce said part of the reason they made the Madison and Milwaukee branches full-fledged family planning centers is because of a more than 100% increase in birth control visits to the centers in state health this month compared to previous years.

“We saw a significant increase starting in August across all of our family planning clinics for people trying to seek birth control specifically,” Boyce said. “People are certainly much more responsive to their efforts to be informed about birth control and access birth control, we believe in part (because of) the Dobbs decision.”

The expansion required retraining staff who were hired to exclusively provide abortion care to include family planning services in their responsibilities – such as birth control counselling, different birth control methods and how to help patients determine which method is best for them.

Although Boyce does not have an exact figure on how much birth control the Orin Road clinic will receive, she said they have ordered new supplies and equipment.

“We’ve certainly heard that there’s a lot of confusion about different birth control methods, even among doctors,” Boyce said. “Ensuring that people have access to comprehensive information about all the different birth control methods so that individuals can choose the method that is best for them is a top and necessary priority in this community.”

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