NATIONAL. Local Officials Urge Congress to Restore Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program Abruptly Cancelled by HHS

The Big Cities Health Coalition (BCHC) held a webinar - you can listen to a recording here - today featuring Patty Hayes, the Director of Public Health – Seattle & King County to discuss how Teen Pregnancy Prevention programs contributed to a dramatic decrease in teen pregnancy rates in her county, why Congress must act to fund them and why her county is suing HHS to protect them. 

Last summer, the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced it would abruptly end grants totaling $200 million to 81 adolescent health projects across the country, which collectively serve 1.2 million young Americans. These projects are funded through the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPPP), a federal grant program grounded in evidence-based research, which provides important funding to diverse organizations working to prevent teen pregnancy in the U.S.

Officials in Seattle & King County in Washington State are challenging this decision in court and have filed a lawsuit to block HHS from ending these programs.  The programs are slated to be cancelled at the end of June 2018, rather than the original date, June 2020. Congressional action by March 23 is necessary to preserve the progress that the program has made in improving adolescent health.