Improving the health of Arizonans through family planning services & community programs

Programming for reproductive and sexual health improves the health of women of childbearing age before, during, and after pregnancy. An estimated 2 million unplanned pregnancies are prevented each year due to family planning services obtained through Title X, Medicaid, and other publicly funded programs. 

The ADHS Family Planning Program offers a statewide, clinic-based approach. Cost-effective comprehensive family planning and reproductive health services are available for Arizona’s men, women, and adolescents. In 2022, Family Planning programs provided over 3,000 services to more than 1,700 Arizonans whose incomes were below the poverty level and otherwise would not be able to afford services.

Our Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) Program offers two strategic approaches — Abstinence Education and Abstinence Plus Education — to improve the health and social well-being of youth. Programming across the state aims to reduce teen pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections, by increasing awareness of healthy relationships and life skills. Arizona’s teen pregnancy rates have significantly decreased from 26.3/1,000 females ages 15-19 in 2015 to 16.6 in 2020.  The teen pregnancy prevention initiatives also offer a Parent/Youth Communication Education component which can give parents/guardians the tools to actively engage in meaningful communication with their teens on a variety of topics including sexual health issues. Teen Pregnancy Prevention educational services are available statewide. Find a program in your area here.

The Arizona Health Improvement Plan (AzHIP)’s Rural & Urban Underserved Health priority is focused on strategies that improve the disproportionate distribution of primary care providers, as well as economic and environmental barriers to care. Addressing the health professional shortage ensures that all Arizonans have access to reproductive and sexual health care. This includes integrating community health workers (CHWs) and community health representatives (CHRs) into primary care settings that are representative of the communities they serve. ADHS Health Start utilizes CHWs in educating pregnant and postpartum women about the benefits of prenatal care and childhood immunizations. Families receive home visits and case management with oversight by nurses and social workers, through the enrolled child’s second year of life. Pregnant women are connected to prenatal care providers and receive on-going education about fetal development and health behaviors that can impact birth outcomes. The program is available throughout the state and is free for participants.

Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) rates have been rising in Arizona and across the nation for more than a decade. Many people infected with STIs are initially symptom free, but an untreated STI can cause severe health outcomes when left untreated. 

The role of the ADHS STI Control Program is to effectively utilize resources to improve the surveillance, epidemiology, policy building and communication capacity at the State level. Support is provided to all stakeholders serving the communities at most risk, including local health departments and community based organizations. 

In 2021, Arizona had over 66,000 combined cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis. Getting tested for sexually transmitted infections, or STIs, is one of the most-important things you can do to protect your health. Have an open and honest conversation with your healthcare provider about your sexual history and STI testing. Find a Clinic in your county that provides confidential free or low-cost testing.

Related Articles

5 Essential Frameworks for Preventing Violent Child Death

The U.S. has a violent child death problem. Developing strategies to prevent violent child deaths death from firearms and traffic crashes is a demanding task that requires consideration of numerous upstream, interrelated, and tangential issues. To help safety advocates develop strategies to prevent violent child death, we compiled five frameworks to help: Understand and explain …
The post 5 Essential Frameworks for Preventing Violent Child Death appeared first on Salud America.

What Are the Risk and Protective Factors for Violent Child Death?

Gun violence and traffic crashes may seem like unpredictable events. But they are not random. They are systematic. Data reveal trends and patterns in gun violence and traffic crashes that can help us identify risk factors and protective factors. This is especially important for addressing violent child deaths. So what does the data show? Join …
The post What Are the Risk and Protective Factors for Violent Child Death? appeared first on Salud America.

As Social Need Screening Advances, Transportation Remains an Afterthought

Some big changes in 2022 and 2023 have set up the healthcare sector to advance screening for non-medical social needs in 2024 and beyond. This is great news as we work to address social determinants of health (SDoH), improve health outcomes, and reduce health disparities. But one key social need – transportation – isn’t getting …
The post As Social Need Screening Advances, Transportation Remains an Afterthought appeared first on Salud America.

We Need to Recognize Toxic Stress as a Health Condition with Clinical Implications

There is a common health condition with serious medical consequences that has not been nationally recognized by the medical or public health community—toxic stress response. Toxic stress is the body’s response to prolonged trauma─like abuse or discrimination─with no support. It can harm lifelong mental, physical, and behavioral health, especially for Latinos and others of color. …
The post We Need to Recognize Toxic Stress as a Health Condition with Clinical Implications appeared first on Salud America.