KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Politics In Play As April Marks The End Of The Texas Women’s Health Program

Texas' fight with the federal government over funding for its Texas Women's Health Program, which will end this month and leave 130,000 low-income women paying for their own birth control or going without it, must include a discussion of politics -- even for the judges considering the case, The Associated Press reports.

The Associated Press/Houston Chronicle: Women's Health Fight Over Politics, Not Health
When Texas lawmakers set up the Women's Health Program in 2005, the goal was to help poor women get access to birth control, check-ups and preventive health care. … When the program came up for renewal last year, many conservatives wanted to exclude clinics that affiliated with groups that support abortion rights. The ensuing battle has brought Texas national attention with two federal lawsuits and accusations from both sides that the other is disregarding the health care needs of 292,000 women enrolled in the program. … The fundamental questions that two federal judges -- one in Washington and one in Austin -- must answer is whether Texas can impose a political test on whether an organization receives taxpayer dollars (Tomlinson, 4/15).

The Dallas Morning News: Times Tough For Low-Income Women As Health Program Vanishes At End Of April
She loves her two young daughters, really she does, says Obdulia Yanez, but there cannot be another baby anytime soon. … But these are tough times for Texas women who rely on low-cost birth control, said Kelly Hart, a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood of North Texas. As the state prepares to terminate its popular Women's Health Program at the end of the month, more than 130,000 low-income women will be paying for their own family planning services — or simply going without (Jacobson, 4/15).

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