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Since We Last Spoke: Texas Turns to IUDs in the Delivery Room

Updates to stories from the Pacific Standard archive.

Nora Caplan-Bricker reported in the September/October 2015 issue of Pacific Standard that many family health-care providers lacked training in administering one of the most reliable forms of birth control available, the intrauterine device (IUD). One-third reported they’d need more training before they’d feel comfortable recommending one.

In October, the Texas Tribune reported on Texas' new policy allowing its Medicaid program to fund the implantation of IUDs in the delivery room for women who want one immediately after giving birth. Previously, doctors would usually wait until the first postnatal check-up — about six weeks after delivery — before discussing the possibility of an IUD implant. Many low-income women missed their appointment and became pregnant again earlier than medically advised. Colorado, one of the first states to change its Medicaid program to cover this procedure, exemplifies the IUD’s potential: In three years, the state “recovered the investment more than six times over,” according to the Texas Tribune.

Explore more stories from the March/April 2017 issue of Pacific Standard.