Posted by Ryan Morgan on January 17, 2014 at 9:13 AM
On January 13, 2014, The Population Institute released its second annual report card on reproductive health and rights in the U.S.
Results for the United States as a whole “were not encouraging” with 13 states receiving a failing grade and the U.S. as a whole received a “C-.” The silver lining? South Carolina received a “B” and was one of only 17 states that a grazed higher than a C+!
The report used 9 criteria for ranking each state which included effectiveness (teen pregnancy rates, rate of unintended pregnancies), affordability (expanding Medicaid, funding for family planning clinics), access (availability of doctors) and prevention. The Prevention breakdown highlighted South Carolina’s mandate for emergency rooms to dispense EC on request, and gave high praise for requiring sex education that covers abstinence, HIV prevention, and contraception be taught in public schools.
Based on this report’s findings, South Carolina is climbing the ranks of reproductive health leaders – but we still have a long way to go.
In issuing the report, Robert Walker, the organization’s President, warned that the status of reproductive health and rights in many states is under continuing assault. “The Affordable Care Act this year should have produced a nationwide improvement in access to reproductive health care services, but 25 states have refused to expand their Medicaid coverage leaving millions without increased access to services. It is imperative that people who care about reproductive health and rights know what states are doing in terms of expanded Medicaid eligibility.” South Carolina has not expanded Medicaid access.
As the 2014 legislative session opens, advocates across our state are teaming up to support a series of prevention-based reproductive health policies, including a measure that would increase knowledge about the HPV vaccine and the Healthy Youth Amendment, which would increase accountability for schools implementing the Comprehensive Health Education Act.
While the assault on women’s reproductive health may be losing some momentum at the state level, Walker warned that, “Reproductive health advocates must remain ever vigilant.“ Tell Them
and it’s 13,000 members have been changing this state for the better for years, and we will not let up the fight for responsible reproductive health policies!
[caption id="attachment_5392" align="aligncenter" width="404"]
How did they do? South Carolina leads the pack among Southern States![/caption]
Find out more about the Population Institute by visiting their website at http://www.populationinstitute.org/