With initial investment from Dane County, Public Health Madison & Dane County will increase staff, and expand hours and services offered at its Sexual and Reproductive Health clinic beginning later this year.
“Access to a full range of reproductive and sexual health services has never been more critical than it is right now,” said Janel Heinrich, director of Public Health Madison & Dane County. “After consulting with partners, we identified preventative care services, including free and easy access to long-term reversible contraception, as one area we could extend our services.”
Public Health already provides reproductive health care, through the Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) clinic at 2705 E. Washington Avenue, in Madison. The program services clients with a wide range of sexual health services including birth control, emergency contraception, STI testing, and more.
“We currently operate the clinic on a part time basis, but are grateful to be able to increase services to provide evidence-based access to preventative healthcare and support reproductive justice in our community,” said Heinrich.
This year, the clinic will expand staffing, hours, and more comprehensive services, including adding long acting reversible contraception, for example, Intrauterine Devices, or IUDs, that provide long-term pregnancy prevention. This additional staff capacity will also allow Public Health to increase outreach and education efforts and work with community stakeholders so that everyone’s reproductive rights are protected and honored.
“The Supreme Court decision on Roe vs Wade has created a health care emergency for women across Dane County, Wisconsin, and beyond,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “This unprecedented loss of rights requires an unprecedented response and that’s why I’m proposing using dollars from the county’s rainy day fund to jumpstart Public Health’s ability to serve more women in our community.”
The anticipated timeline of launching this expansion is this fall. About $360,000 is being allocated by Dane County for this effort in 2022. Moving beyond, the annual cost of the expansion will be funded jointly between the County and the City of Madison.
“Focusing on prevention is an evidence-based approach that can improve health outcomes for Madisonians,” said Satya Rhodes-Conway, City of Madison Mayor, “This is one of the ways local government can help in the face of inaction by the state legislature.”
To learn more about reproductive and sexual health resources available in Dane County, visit publichealthmdc.com/sexualhealth.