May 21, 2021 | Lansing, MI | AMN – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel joined a coalition of 23 state attorneys general in submitting a comment letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) applauding the agency for its proposed rule to undo the Trump Administration’s harmful 2019 Title X Rule.
The proposed rule will rectify many of the harms the 2019 Rule caused women, those who live in rural areas, people of color, and members of the LGBTQ community.
“This proposed rule corrects many of the harms resulting from the previous administration’s 2019 Title X Rule,” Nessel said. “This program is vital in ensuring millions of Americans have access to quality, affordable health coverage and I am happy to see the Biden Administration working quickly to restore it.”
The Title X program funds not only family planning counseling and access to various contraceptive methods, but also supports critical screenings for high blood pressure, anemia, diabetes, sexually transmitted diseases, as well as cervical and breast cancer. The 2019 rule led to a dramatic loss of Title X providers nationwide. Due to this loss of providers, the number of clients served by the program dropped by 60 percent from 2018 to 2020. As a result, low-income, uninsured, and racial and ethnic minorities’ access to Title X family planning services has decreased.
HHS’s proposed rule would put the Title X program back on track to providing underserved communities with quality and accessible medical care. For example, the rule would allow Title X clinics to:
- Share information with patients about their reproductive healthcare choices and available, high quality providers;
- Provide a referral for an abortion, if requested by the patient;
- Provide pregnant patients with referrals to prenatal care, if requested by the patient; and
- Remove the current required physical and financial separation of Title X funded services from abortion care.
In the letter, the attorneys general support HHS’s decision to readopt the original Title X regulations that took effect in 2000 and the proposed revisions that would ensure access to equitable, affordable, client-centered, quality family planning services, including the rule’s focus on advancing health equity and reducing barriers to care and health disparities among underserved communities.
Joining Attorney General Nessel in sending this letter are the attorneys general of California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.