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HHS Announces Grant Funding for Reproductive Health and Family Planning Services Research

Latest Actions by Biden-Harris Administration to Protect and
Expand Access to Reproductive Health Care

Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Office of Population Affairs (OPA), announced more than $6 million for Title X Family Planning Research grants, Research-to-Practice Center grants, and Teenage Pregnancy Prevention Evaluation and Research grants as part of its work to protect and expand access to reproductive health care. HHS’ OPA focuses on advancing best practices for health in family planning and preventive care. The funding is intended to improve service delivery, promote the adoption of healthy behaviors, and reduce existing health disparities.

“These new research grants will provide insights that will help our community partners provide essential, client-centered reproductive health services,” said ADM Rachel L. Levine, Assistant Secretary for Health. 

“We are pleased to fund new and innovative research that will enhance the work of our grantees working to provide critical reproductive health services across the U.S.,” said Jessica Swafford Marcella, HHS Deputy Assistant Secretary for Population Affairs and Director, Office of Adolescent Health.

Title X Family Planning Research Grants

Title X Family Planning Research grants aim to conduct research or analyses to generate information that will improve the delivery of family planning services and expand equitable access to quality sexual and reproductive health services offered under Title X of the Public Health Service Act.

Grantee NameCityStateAward Amount
RTIResearch Triangle ParkNorth Carolina$340,495
University of MichiganAnn ArborMichigan$489,086
Baltimore City Health DepartmentBaltimoreMaryland$750,000
Guttmacher InstituteNew YorkNew York$750,000
Child TrendsBethesdaMaryland$515,919
                                                 TOTAL: $2,845,500

Teenage Pregnancy Prevention Evaluation and Research Grants

OPA’s Teenage Pregnancy Prevention Research Grant projects will explore new questions in teen pregnancy prevention and adolescent sexual and reproductive health to improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and quality of these programs for adolescents or young adults, and/or reduce existing disparities. Funded grantees will conduct research or analyses to generate information that will 1) identify factors that improve the quality, access, and equity of teen pregnancy prevention programs for adolescents or young adults, or that reduce existing disparities, 2) identify and/or validate core program components or “active ingredients” essential for teen pregnancy prevention programs and practices to produce the desired outcomes; and 3) scale and conduct testing of emerging adolescent sexual health innovations in order to generate early data and prepare for future rigorous impact evaluation.

Grantee NameCityStateAward Amount
University of Maryland, BaltimoreBaltimoreMaryland$312,528
AMTC & AssociatesMilwaukeeWisconsin$322,000
State University of New Jersey, RutgersNewarkNew Jersey$198,917
University of South FloridaTampaFlorida$399,837
 TOTAL: $1,233,282

Research-to-Practice Center Grants

OPA’s Research-to-Practice Center Grants projects will synthesize and translate existing research into practice to improve adolescent health and ultimately help reduce teen pregnancy. Projects will focus on expanding the delivery of trauma-informed and inclusive practices in adolescent sexual and reproductive health programming and care and bringing adolescent sexual and reproductive health research to youth-serving professionals.

Grantee NameCityStateAward Amount
Child TrendsBethesdaMaryland$1,092,000
Healthy Teen NetworkTakoma ParkMaryland$1,063,776
 TOTAL: $2,155,766

Below is a summary of the actions HHS has taken to ensure access to reproductive health care following the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization Supreme Court decision:    

Protecting Emergency Medical Care:  HHS issued guidance and a letter from Secretary Becerra to reaffirm that the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA, also known as the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act) protects providers when offering legally-mandated, life- or health-saving abortion services as stabilizing care for emergency medical conditions. 

  • Secretary Becerra and CMS Administrator Brooks-LaSure issued a letter to U.S. governors inviting them to work with CMS and apply for Medicaid 1115 waivers to provide increased access to care for women from states where reproductive rights are under attack and women may be denied medical care. They also underscored that current or proposed abortion restriction laws do not negate providers’ responsibilities to comply with federal laws protecting access to emergency health care.

Safeguarding Information on Health and Rights for Patients and Providers:  HHS launched the ReproductiveRights.gov public awareness website, which includes accurate information about reproductive health, including a Know-Your-Rights patient fact sheet to help patients and providers. 

Protecting Patients and Providers from Discrimination: 

  • HHS issued a proposed rule that would strengthen the regulations interpreting the nondiscrimination provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and would reinforce that discrimination on the basis of sex includes discrimination on the basis of pregnancy or related conditions. 
  • HHS issued guidance to roughly 60,000 U.S. retail pharmacies, clarifying their obligations under federal civil rights laws. 

Protecting Patient Privacy: HHS issued guidance that clarifies to patients and providers the extent to which federal law and regulations protect individuals’ private medical information when seeking abortion and other forms of reproductive health care, as well as when using apps on smartphones. 

Supporting Quality Reproductive Health Care: HHS announced nearly $3 million in new funding to bolster training and technical assistance for the nationwide network of Title X family planning providers. 

Protecting Access to Birth Control:  

HHS has also released a report that the agency prepared for the President on HHS actions taken to-date to ensure access to reproductive health care following the Supreme Court’s ruling, with further details on future actions and commitments. Read the report “Secretary’s Report: Health Care Under Attack: An Action Plan to Protect and Strengthen Reproductive Care.”

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Author: ASH Media

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