Critical State Funding to Safeguard + Expand Abortion Access Coming Soon to LA County
Amy Moy / 415.518.4465 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Request for Proposals for the LA County Abortion Safe Haven Pilot Program Released in Advance of the 50th Anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Decision
LOS ANGELES - Today, a Request for Proposals (RFP) has been released to protect, expand and improve patient access to abortion information and services in Los Angeles County. The RFP was developed in partnership with County representatives, local providers, community-based organizations, and other key stakeholders.
In response to the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade and other states enacting dangerous abortion bans and severe restrictions, Governor Newsom and legislative leaders took swift action to build on California’s long standing history as a national leader in protecting and expanding access to essential and comprehensive health services. A robust bill package was enacted and $200 million was invested in the state budget to increase the state’s abortion capacity and infrastructure, and bolster protections for providers and patients in a post-Roe environment. Recognizing that California and Los Angeles County in particular, will see an increase in need for abortion services from patients denied care in their home states, Senate Bill 1245 (Kamlager-Dove) established the Los Angeles County Abortion Access Safe Haven Pilot Program. The 2022-2023 state budget appropriated $20,000,000 to the County of Los Angeles to fund the program.
Essential Access Health (Essential Access), a Los Angeles-based non-profit with over 50 years-experience distributing public funding to support the delivery of sexual and reproductive health care, was selected by the County to serve as the Program Administrator to distribute program funding and ensure compliance with statutory requirements. Entities that serve individuals and communities in Los Angeles can apply for funding to support expansion of clinical services, provider training, community education, infrastructure and security enhancements, and other activities to improve access to abortion care and accurate, unbiased information County-wide. Applications are due February 20th.
State and County leaders, along with Essential Access released the following statements:
“As an OBGYN, I am committed to helping ensure Californians can protect their reproductive health across their lifespan,” said California Surgeon General, Dr. Diana Ramos. “While many grapple to understand the full impacts of a post-Roe society, people can feel reassured knowing that California is taking bold steps forward to protect reproductive rights and enhance access to reproductive health services for individuals all over the country.”
“Access to abortion is critical for individual and community health. Los Angeles has already seen in increase in demand for care since the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade. The state-funded resources that are coming soon to the County, will help ensure that everyone living in - or coming to Los Angeles - can get care and information that meets their health needs, and respects their personal decisions,” said Dr. Barbara Ferrer, Director, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.
“We are honored to have the opportunity to leverage our decades of experience effectively stewarding and distributing critical public funding to serve as the Program Administrator of the Los Angeles County Abortion Safe Haven Pilot Program, and reducing barriers to patients getting the abortion services they want and need,” said Nomsa Khalfani, PhD, Co-CEO at Essential Access. "In California, we will do everything we can to enhance our abortion care capacity, reduce barriers to access, and meet the health needs of patients living in and coming to our state.”
“As states across the country move to ban or severely restrict abortion, California has taken a stand and is providing a beacon of hope and a pathway to access for individuals in need of time-sensitive and potentially life-changing - and saving care,” said Amy Moy, Co-CEO at Essential Access. “The release of the RFP today is an important step forward in ensuring that our state, and Los Angeles County specifically, can be a sanctuary for reproductive freedom and that local providers and organizations have the resources they need to provide critical health services and information.”
Specific details related to project scope areas, eligibility requirements and submission instructions are available here.
Essential Access was also awarded a contract by the California Department of Health Care, Access and Information (HCAI) to serve as the program and fiscal administrator of the newly established $40 million Uncompensated Care and $20 million Practical Support funding streams to provide access to abortion and birth control services at no-cost and make access a reality with support for travel, lodging, and child care. A statewide stakeholder group meeting is scheduled to kick-off next week, to inform the effective and rapid release of funding this Spring.
“We are pleased to announce our partnership with Essential Access Health as they have many years of experience doing the important work of supporting individuals who face barriers in accessing reproductive health services,” said Department of Health Care Access and Information Director Elizabeth Landsberg. “These grants allow underserved populations, and those without coverage for abortion and reproductive health care the opportunity to access the health care they need, when they need it.”
Essential Access Health advances health equity and champions and promotes quality sexual and reproductive health care for all. For more than 50 years, Essential Access has distributed federal Title X family planning funding to health centers and community clinics statewide. Learn more at www.essentialaccess.org