Governor Moore Announces Expanded Access to Contraceptive Care Across Maryland

Published: 11/28/2023

ANNAPOLIS, MD — Governor Wes Moore today announced a new four-year partnership to provide Marylanders with more equitable access to contraceptive care. In partnership with the Maryland Department of Health, Upstream USA will begin offering contraceptive care resources to health care providers, including free technical assistance, training and education in settings where most women already receive their health care.

“This is about making sure that we treat contraception like basic health care, because contraception is basic health care,” said Gov. Moore. “Under this partnership with Upstream, we will help ensure that more of our health care providers are trained on the ins and outs of contraceptive care; we will bring contraception to communities that have too often been overlooked – including our rural communities—and we will build on Maryland’s growing reputation as a state that is ready to lead on health care and close gaps in our healthcare system.”

According to Guttmacher, Maryland has one of the highest rates of unintended pregnancy in the United States. As of 2023, nearly 285,000 Maryland women in need live in areas where there is not reasonable access to health organizations that offer a full range of contraceptive methods. The public-private partnership is another crucial step taken by the Moore-Miller Administration to provide high quality, all-encompassing health care statewide. 

“Today’s announcement doubles down on our administration’s commitment to protecting reproductive health care freedoms and our commitment to equity,” said Lt. Gov. Miller. “By partnering with Upstream, Maryland is eliminating barriers and expanding access to the basic health care that enables women to make choices about their reproductive care. This is just another example of Maryland leading the way on progress.” 

CCI Health Services, a Federally Qualified Health Center, will be the first healthcare partner to receive support and services as part of the statewide initiative. With locations across Maryland, CCI Health Services will be able to provide high-quality, accessible care to its members, who typically live in medically underserved communities. 

“Tens of thousands of women live in areas of Maryland where there is not reasonable access to health care,” said Maryland Department of Health Secretary Dr. Laura Herrera Scott. “This partnership puts a much-needed emphasis on women’s health by protecting their rights and offering equitable access to a full range of contraceptive methods on demand.”

Upstream USA is a non-profit organization that aims to reduce unintended pregnancy and improve contraceptive care for patients across the nation. The organization trains community healthcare organizations, hospital practices, and primary care facilities to provide well-rounded, patient-centered and prompt contraceptive care as part of basic healthcare. Through providing these resources over the past six years, Upstream USA reports the non-profit is on a trajectory to reach health centers that will serve more than 1 million patients annually.

“We are at a crucial point in history, where there should be no wrong door for patients to access birth control,” said Upstream Chief Executive Officer Mark Edwards. “Under the direction of Governor Moore and in partnership with Upstream, the Maryland Department of Health is taking a leadership role to close gaps in contraceptive care by integrating best-in-class contraceptive services into primary care settings.”   

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