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 October 5, 2016
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 Texas women’s health programs should maximize services and achieve universal access to family planning services in the state.
- Texas should adopt program rules and policies that ensure ample program funding and broad availability of actively participating providers.
- Preventive healthcare services should include health history; contraceptive care; appropriate screenings (e.g., for breast and cervical cancer, sexually transmitted infections, depression, intimate partner violence, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, tobacco use, and alcohol misuse); access to long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARC); and preconception care (including counseling on establishing a reproductive life plan and on folic acid intake to prevent neural tube defects). Preventive healthcare services should follow best practices for family planning as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- 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; adequate birth spacing lowers the risk of premature birth and low birth weight.
- Texas should eliminate barriers to preventive healthcare services – including contraception – that make access to these services more difficult for women, including adolescents. These barriers include exemptions that would exclude or limit benefits for prescription contraceptive drugs and devices.