by Ellen R. Shaffer, Arlene Ash, Mona Sarfaty, Medical Care, Volume 50, Number 7, July 2012. Excerpt:
Contraception is a fundamental health care service and a basic public health measure. The ability to plan, start, space, and discontinue bearing children has transformed everyday life for women, families, and communities. It has vastly enhanced women’s autonomy, professional and educational achievement, and emotional satisfaction and helped extend their life span.
Contraceptive coverage has become increasingly standard. However, powerful opponents have attempted to blur the role of contraception as an essential element of comprehensive health care. By the same token, women themselves as well as particular women’s health care services have been excluded from coverage and in some cases stigmatized, to the detriment of health outcomes.
Federal policy on funding for reproductive health has real consequences on the lives of women, men, children, and families. It is time for those who care about these consequences to stand up and fight for women’s health and reproductive rights, including full coverage for contraceptive health care, a health service of fundamental personal and public health significance.
Medical Care Journal: