Title X and Oregon 

Sept. 10, 2019—On March 4, 2019, the federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued final rules in a 50-year old program known as Title X which provides financial assistance to healthcare clinics providing family planning services to low income individuals, mostly women. Because the rules gagged and scripted what physicians and other providers could say or not say to a patient about family planning and abortion services, the OMA joined with the American Medical Association in challenging the legality of the rules.

In a successful initial challenge in federal district court in Oregon, the final rules were prevented from going into effect nationwide. On appeal, however, the federal government was able to convince the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to allow the final rules to go into effect while the case in Oregon was pending. Cases from Oregon, Washington, and California are being reviewed at the same time, and the merits of the federal government’s appeal will be heard in San Francisco on September 23, 2019. 

With the final rules beginning to be enforced by HHS, the State of Oregon—which had participated in Title X for decades announced—announced its departure from the program. The state will use state funding for the clinics that had received Title X funds in the past.  

 Background on the case the OMA joined with the AMA is available on the AMA website. The Oregon Health Authority website has background on OHA's departure from Title X.