New Texas women’s health program has family planning focus


AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Officials have unveiled an overhauled state-run women’s health program providing care to low-income Texans — including a renewed push for family planning services once offered by Planned Parenthood.

The state created the Texas Women’s Health Program in 2013, after the Republican-controlled Legislature cut funding to health care providers that performed abortions. But abortion rights advocates said that program didn’t fill care gaps in family planning and for services like cancer screenings.

Announced Tuesday, the new Healthy Texas Women program combines the Women’s Health Program with two other state family planning initiatives.

Republican state Sen. Jane Nelson said 5,000-plus providers have joined the new program, triple the providers in the state women’s health programs in 2011.

Some 260,000 women are enrolled in the current program. The new one can serve more.

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