Ibis and the MDPH to explore the impact of MA health care reform on access to contraception
April 25, 2008 – Ibis and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) Family Planning Program received a grant from the National Institute for Reproductive Health’s Low-Income Access Program for a project that will explore the impact of Massachusetts health care reform on low-income women’s access to contraception. In 2006, Massachusetts became the first state to pass legislation mandating that all residents have health insurance. As of July 2007, all state residents are required to be enrolled in a health insurance plan, and low-income residents may enroll in government-subsidized plans, which include family planning as a benefit. Together with the MDPH Family Planning Program, Ibis will collect preliminary data to examine whether health care reform is improving access to contraception for low-income women and to identify potential barriers created by reform. This project will help inform other state and federal efforts to expand health care coverage, lay the groundwork for future, more in-depth evaluations, and identify ways that advocates and policymakers concerned about reproductive health care can work to improve these programs.