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New Report Emphasizes Importance of Title X Services for Youth Health and Well-being

As pediatricians, we know how important access to confidential health care services is in supporting adolescent health and well-being. Through the federal family planning program, Title X, all minors seeking care at a Title X-funded clinic are legally allowed to access confidential services, including sexually transmitted disease testing, contraception and pregnancy counseling, without a parent or guardian—even in states without that explicit protection.

Following a rule change in 2019, many clinics were forced to leave the Title X program and lose the unique legal protections permitting them to offer confidential services to minors.

Our new Research at a Glance highlights recent PolicyLab research that sought to understand how the rule change impacted minors’ access to confidential family planning services across the U.S. and if there were disparities in loss of access. The findings show that more than 1.8 million youth aged 15-17 across the U.S. did not have access to confidential family planning care after the 2019 Title X rule change, with youth living in the Midwest and in rural areas disproportionately affected.

Now that access to comprehensive reproductive health care has been limited in many states, the services that Title X provides youth are more important than ever in supporting adolescent health and well-being. 

Learn more about our research and what it means by accessing the Research at a Glance here