New money flows into health services for low-income Texas women

Texas Capitol (Josh Hinkle/KXAN)
Texas Capitol (Josh Hinkle/KXAN)

An estimated 170,000 more low-income women in Texas will have better access to health and family planning services, such as screening and birth control, after health officials on Friday announced some $45 million in state dollars awarded to 222 clinics, hospitals and care centers across the state.

The money is part of a $100 million allotment Texas lawmakers budgeted to expand the state’s Primary Health Care Program, which pays for or supplements health services to low-income women. The program was expanded as part of an effort to restore funding to women’s services after they were cut in 2011, in part due to a budget shortfall and also by a Republican-dominated Legislature eager to shut down clinics that provide abortions.

The funding, distributed through the Texas Department of Health Services, will not go to pay for abortions and is separate from the Texas Women’s Health program administered by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. The agencies will get the sam

A list of the 55 recipient agencies, many of which run multiple clinics and care centers, can be found here.

Services include:

  • Pelvic examination
  • STD screenings and treatment
  • HIV screenings
  • Diabetes screenings
  • Immunizations
  • High blood pressure screenings
  • Cholesterol screenings
  • Clinical breast exams
  • Mammograms
  • Pap tests
  • Diagnostic services for women with abnormal breast or cervical cancer test results
  • Cervical dysplasia treatment
  • Individualized case management
  • Prenatal medical and dental services
  • Sterilizations
  • Contraceptives

To be eligible for the program, women must be 18 years of age or older and at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. Texas also offers women’s health services through the department’s Family Planning program and the Texas Women’s Health program administered by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

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