NEWSFLASH: Women’s Health Victory in Indiana

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On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court dismissed without comment an appeal of the Seventh Circuit Court decision to block an Indiana state law that would ban Planned Parenthood from receiving Medicaid funding. Why does the state want it defunded? Because Planned Parenthood clinics offer abortion services—along with all sorts of other medical care. Some Republican state lawmakers […]

What If Women Are Offered Contraception for Free?

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Last fall, researchers in Missouri caught the attention of public health experts and advocates across North America. Some 9,000 St. Louis women had been offered their choice of contraceptives for free in a study that has since been called an “Obamacare simulation.” Two years later, the teen pregnancy rate was at 6 per 1,000 instead […]

Poorer Countries Get Price Cut on HPV Vaccine – But Is It Enough?

Some of the world’s poorest countries are getting price cuts for vaccines that protect against 70 percent of all cervical cancers. The two companies involved, Merck and GlaxoSmithKline, announced recently that their vaccines (Gardasil and Cervarix) would be sold to those countries for $4.50 and $4.60, respectively. These prices are an improvement from the previous $13 per […]

Peace Corps Women Deserve Abortion Coverage, Too

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With states tightening up abortion laws, and the FDA still restricting emergency contraception, recent reproductive rights efforts have been less than encouraging. However, it was a step forward last year when President Obama signed the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, which included a provision sponsored by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), that protects military women by providing […]

New FDA Restrictions on Morning-After Pill Are … Still Restrictive

UPDATE: The U.S. Justice Department announced today that it will appeal U.S. District Court Judge Edward Korman’s decision to make emergency contraception available to all ages without restrictions, and asked for a stay of his ruling. The implication is that the DOJ supports the FDA ruling that’s explained below. After U.S. District Judge Edward Korman ruled […]

Can Catholic Colleges Block Free Condom Distribution?

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The Affordable Care Act requires that birth control be made available through health plans, in some cases without co-pays or deductibles. That’s prompted religious institutions to object to paying for care that’s not consistent with their values. But Boston College’s recent steps to stop free condom distribution doesn’t involve sponsoring birth control—it involves location. Boston […]

New Safe-Sex Campaign Paints Health Concerns Blue

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Raisins? Blueberries? Prunes? Keep guessing. A new safe-sex campaign has gone simply ballistic in its promotion of healthy habits for men. A pair of singing testicles warns sexually active males of the tragic consequence that comes from forgetting to pack a condom: a case of the infamous blue balls. The duo’s homepage declares their mission statement: […]

Downton Abbey Meets Roe v. Wade

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A week ago, in episode 4 of the third season of Downton Abbey, American fans witnessed the tragedy British viewers had already seen—Lady Sybil’s death from eclampsia after childbirth.  This week–SPOILER ALERT–episode 5 exonerates Lord Grantham of any role in the fatality and ends with he and his wife sobbing in each other’s arms. The […]

What Abortion Access Looks Like for Young Women of Color

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She was 14 years old and going into the 9th grade. From the moment she learned she was pregnant, she contemplated what to do. Not comprehending how to even deliver a baby (let alone how to take care of a child for the rest of her life) prompted grave fears about her future. Being the […]

High Maternal Mortality Rates for Black Moms Still a Mystery

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It’s been called a conundrum. A mystery. A disgrace. A national crisis. But when you ask why black women in the United States die from complications of pregnancy and childbirth at three to four times the rate of other ethnic/racial groups, the answer is usually the same: “We simply don’t know.” Why not? The short […]