The Texas Women’s Healthcare Coalition is a coalition of organizations promoting access to preventive healthcare for all Texas women.
TWHC is working toward the vision of a state where every woman has access to the preventive and preconception care that will help her stay healthy and prepare for healthy, planned pregnancies.
Approved November 8, 2012
The Texas Women’s Healthcare Coalition (TWHC) is committed to the following Principles in our work to improve access to preventive healthcare for Texas women:
- Improving access to women’s preventive healthcare will improve maternal and child health; empower women to take personal responsibility for their health and their future; and reduce costs to the state.
- Funding for the DSHS Family Planning Program should be restored to, at a minimum, SFY 2010-2011 levels in order to provide for adequate access to preventive healthcare for low- and moderate-income women throughout Texas.
- Texas should continue the Medicaid Women’s Health Program and adopt program rules and policies that assure ample program funding and broad availability of actively participating providers.
- Preventive healthcare services should include health history; appropriate screenings (e.g., for breast and cervical cancer, sexually transmitted infections, depression, intimate partner violence, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, tobacco use, and alcohol misuse); and preconception care (including counseling on establishing a reproductive life plan and on folic acid intake to prevent neural tube defects).
- Education, counseling, and provision of the full range of Food and Drug Administration-approved contraceptive methods are essential components of women’s preventive healthcare, allowing women to avoid unplanned pregnancy and to optimize their health prior to pregnancy. Planned pregnancies improve the health of children as well; adequate birth spacing lowers the risk of premature birth and low birth weight.
- Texas should not impose any additional barriers to preventive healthcare services –including contraception – that make access to these services more difficult. This would include Texas not broadening exemptions that would exclude or limit benefits for prescription contraceptive drugs and devices. Texas should adopt solutions that assure access to contraceptive coverage, while protecting the religious freedom of employers and employees.