Fix Pennsylvania's Medicaid Policy on IUDs
Cross-posted with the Philadelphia Inquirer
Imagine a woman in labor who goes to the hospital with a delivery plan she made in consultation with her obstetrician: yes to antibiotics in labor; no to an epidural for pain control; yes to neonatal circumcision; and yes to having an intrauterine device (IUD) placed immediately after childbirth.
Along with contraceptive implants, IUDs are a form of long-acting, reversible contraception (LARC) that is safe, effective, and convenient, whether placed after childbirth or at any other point. And more and more, obstetricians are offering placement of IUDs and implants while women are admitted to the hospital for childbirth. These postpartum IUDs and implants are part of a menu of methods that women can use to space their pregnancies, with other options available at a six-week followup visit that, unfortunately, only about half of women are able to attend.
Pooja Mehta, MD is an LDI Fellow, Robert Wood Johnson clinical scholar and obstetrician-gynecologist at the University of Pennsylvania and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Melissa Weiler Gerber is president and CEO of Access Matters.