May 23, 2018
2 min read

ACP, AMA oppose proposed changes to Title X

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President Donald J. Trump
Donald J. Trump

President Donald J. Trump’s administration recently proposed changes to Title X that would “unacceptably” deny federal funding to family planning clinics unless they agree to restrict certain services and advice offered, according to the ACP.

In separate press releases, ACP and AMA expressed concern that these changes would harm the patient-physician relationship and limit access to essential health care services, including family planning, vaccinations, cancer screenings, birth control and STI testing and treatment, for vulnerable, low-income populations.

If the proposed rule is passed, numerous patients will face uncertainty, according to ACP.

Ana María López

“Many will not have an alternative source of care available in their community, may be uncertain as to where they could go for care, or may choose to forgo preventive care or other services altogether, putting their health at risk,” Ana María López, MD, MPH, president of ACP, said in the release.

“The administration’s proposed policy changes are outdated and would turn back the clock on women’s health care, patient-centered care, and informed shared decision-making instead of propelling it forward,” she added.

In the release, ACP urged the administration to withdraw its proposal that would strip protection of legal services for patients in need that is enforced by Title X and to promote accessible care for all individuals in the United States.

David O. Barbe

“We are particularly alarmed about government interference with the patient-physician relationship in the exam room,” David O. Barbe, MD, president of AMA, said in a release.

“High-quality medical care relies on honest, unfiltered conversations between patients and their physicians,” he added. “Gag orders that restrict the ability of physicians to explain all options to their patients and refer them — whatever their health care needs — compromise this relationship and force physicians and nurses to withhold information that their patients need to make decisions about their care.”

The AMA noted that Title X has been successful and received bipartisan support for years.

“We are at a 30-year low for unintended pregnancy and a historic low for pregnancy among teenagers — largely because of expanded access to birth control,” Barbe said. “We should not be walking that progress back.”

Disclosure: Healio Internal Medicine was unable to confirm relevant financial disclosures at the time of publication.