This Seattle High School Just Changed the Face of Birth Control Access for Students

A public high school in Seattle will now be offering services for its students to provide long-lasting birth control, such as IUDs or hormonal implants, at the school-based health center.

In 2009 the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommended contraceptive implants and intrauterine devices as the most effective method of reducing unintended pregnancies for teens. The organization explained that these long-term and reversible methods are often most effective for young people as they eliminate “adherence and user-dependence from the effectiveness equation.” The ACOG also warned of the potential barriers to this care, such as the cost, especially for young people.

The Chief Sealth International seems to have figured out a way to make these options affordable for its students. Placement of these long-acting reversible contraceptives requires is often expensive and requires an extra visit to a clinic. Services are available at in-school health clinics in Washington, however, through a program called Take Charge, a Washington State Medicaid program that specifically targets minors seeking comprehensive contraceptive services.

For young people in Washington state who are seeking affordable birth control, but do not want their parents to know or otherwise do not have access to insurance, this is an affordable, attainable, and confidential alternative.


Media Resources: ACOG.org Publications 2009; Grist 5/27/15; Planned Parenthood of the Northwest;

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