News / Utah / 

Bill would have Medicaid pay for birth control longer

Bill would have Medicaid pay for birth control longer

Estimated read time: Less than a minute

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

SALT LAKE CITY -- Several children's groups and low-income advocates are behind a proposal to have state Medicaid pay for birth control for a longer period of time.

The bill would pay for two years of family planning services through Medicaid for low-income families. Planned Parenthood Executive Director Melissa Bird says more than 50 percent of births in poor families are unplanned.

"If you are going to choose between putting milk on the table or paying for birth control, you are going to choose to feed your kids," she said.

Other groups say having babies too close together endangers their health, the mother's health and increases the risk of continued poverty.

"It really shows that the state is interested in making sure that women who are low-income are able to plan their families," she said.

Bird said having Medicaid pay for birth control could cut the number of abortions in Utah in half.

"If we can do that, everybody wins," she said.

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Jennifer Seelig, D-Salt Lake City. The bill is supported by Planned Parenthood, the March of Dimes, Voices for Utah Children and the Utah Health Policy Project.



Mary Richards


    Catch up on the top news and features from, sent weekly.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast