April 14, 2021—The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is proposing a new rule to revise the Title X family planning program regulations. The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), entitled “Ensuring access to equitable, affordable, client-centered, quality family planning services” will be open for comment for 30 days starting 4:15 p.m., April 15, 2021. HHS welcomes public comment on this proposed rule.
For 50 years, Title X family planning clinics have played a critical role in ensuring access to a broad range of family planning and related preventive health services for millions of low-income or uninsured individuals and others. Title X is the only federal grant program dedicated solely to providing individuals with comprehensive family planning and related preventive health services.
Family planning includes a broad range of services related to achieving pregnancy, preventing pregnancy, and assisting women, men, and couples with achieving their desired number and spacing of children. Core family planning services provided by all Title X service grantees include:
- Discussion with clients about their reproductive life plan.
- A broad range of acceptable and effective family planning methods and services for delaying or preventing pregnancy.
- The broad range of family planning services does not include abortion as a method of family planning.
- Pregnancy testing, and counseling in accordance with the Title X regulations.
- Services centered around pre-conception health and achieving pregnancy, which should include:
- Basic infertility services;
- STD prevention education, screening, and treatment;
- HIV testing and referral for treatment when appropriate; and
- Screening for substance use disorders and referral when appropriate to help reduce adverse pregnancy-related outcomes and improve individuals’ reproductive health generally.
Title X projects may also include other reproductive health and related preventive health services that are considered beneficial to reproductive health such as HPV vaccination, provision of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), breast and cervical cancer screening, and screening for obesity, smoking, drug and alcohol use, mental health, and intimate partner violence.