Report Urges Boost For U.S. Family Planning Program

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A reproductive health think-tank says publicly funded family planning prevents nearly 2 million unintended pregnancies and more than 800,000 abortions in the U.S. each year, saving billions of dollars.

The research released by the Guttmacher Institute is intended to counter conservative objections to expanding the program.

Report co-author Rachel Benson Gold asserts that every dollar spent on it saves taxpayers $4 in costs associated with unintended births to mothers eligible for Medicaid-funded natal care.

Last month, House Democrats -- under heat from Republicans -- abandoned an attempt to include an expansion of family planning services for the poor in the economic stimulus bill. One anti-abortion activist called the short-lived proposal a "shameful" population control program that targeted low-income families.

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