Texas Policy Evaluation Project
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Press Releases

Research Suggests Mexico’s Family Planning Initiative Could Serve as Template for Texas (10/21/2016)

New research from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP) shows unmet demand for postpartum long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) among Mexican-born women in Texas. Mexico’s family-planning initiative, launched in the 1980s, made postpartum LARC—including the Intra-Uterine Device (IUD)—widely available to women at no cost. Recently, there has been considerable interest in the United States for postpartum access to highly effective contraception such as the IUD. The research, based on a 2013 survey of postpartum Mexican-born women in Austin and El Paso, as well as reanalysis of surveys conducted in Mexico between 1987 and 2014, was recently published online in Maternal and Child Health Journal. Read the full release here

Texas Women Lack Knowledge of Recent Abortion Restrictions, Do Not Support HB2 (5/20/2016)

New research from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP) shows that over half of Texas women had not heard of recent abortion laws, or, if they had, did not know much about the laws’ restrictions—including the House Bill 2 (HB2) requirements that physicians have hospital admitting privileges and clinics meet ambulatory surgical center (ASC) standards. Of those women who were aware of the laws, only nineteen percent said that they strongly or somewhat strongly supported them. The article, based on a statewide representative survey of Texas women of reproductive age, was recently published in the academic journal Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health. Read the full release here

New Research Shows Burdens of Texas Abortion Clinic Closures Due to House Bill 2 (3/17/2016)

Women Face Increased Travel Distances, High Out-of-Pocket Costs, Overnight Stays, and Decreased Access to Medication Abortion

New research from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP) shows that the closure of over half of abortion clinics in Texas after the introduction of House Bill 2 (HB2)—one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country—has resulted in significant burdens for women, including increased travel distances, high out-of-pocket costs, overnight stays, and decreased access to medication abortion. For women in the study whose nearest abortion clinic closed after HB2, the average distance to the nearest provider increased fourfold. Read the full press release here.

New Research Shows the Impact of Defunding Planned Parenthood (2/3/2016)

Excluding Affiliates of Abortion Providers Led To Decreased Provision of Highly Effective Contraception and Subsequently Led To Increased Medicaid-Paid Births

New research from TxPEP in collaboration with other researchers shows the impact of defunding Planned Parenthood in Texas. Excluding affiliates of abortion providers led to decreased provision of highly effective contraception and subsequently led to increased Medicaid-paid births. This article was published February 3, 2016 in the New England Journal of Medicine. Read the full release here.

For the First Time, New Research Details the Impact of Texas' Abortion Law on Women (1/19/2016)

TxPEP Research Finds that When Clinics Closed as a Result of HB2, Women Faced a Variety of Obstacles that Delayed Care and Prevented Some from Obtaining a Desired Abortion

A new study by the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP) finds that following the enactment of Texas’ law restricting abortion, HB2, women who sought abortion care at Texas clinics experienced numerous barriers accessing care, forcing some to obtain abortions later in pregnancy, and in a few cases, continue an unwanted pregnancy. The study, which was published online in the peer-reviewed journal Contraception, is the first study to document women’s experiences seeking abortion care shortly after clinic closures associated with the enforcement of a restrictive abortion law. Read the full release here

Study Shows 95% of Women with Unintended Pregnancies in the Two Years After a Delivery Had Unmet Demand for Implants, IUDs or Sterilization (1/14/2016)

TxPEP Research Suggests that New Medicaid Rules Allowing Hospitals Reimbursement for Long-Acting Contraception Could Substantially Reduce Unintended Pregnancy

A new study from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP) has shown that a large fraction of unintended pregnancies in the two years after a delivery may result from barriers to accessing their preferred method of contraception. Women who experienced barriers to their preferred method were three times as likely to become pregnant than women who did not, and were much less likely to have initiated use of a highly effective method. Most surprising is that 95% of women who had unintended pregnancies had expressed interest in implants and intrauterine devices and/or sterilization before they got pregnant. Read the full press release here

Study Finds At Least 100,000 Texas Women Have Attempted to Self-Induce Abortion  (11/17/2015)

TxPEP Research Highlights Potential Impact of Clinic Shutdown Laws on Women’s Health, Suggests Self-Induced Abortion More Common in Texas 

Today, the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP) released first-of-its-kind research that finds at least 100,000 Texas women ages 18 to 49 (estimated to be 1.7% of Texas women of reproductive age) have ever attempted to end a pregnancy on their own without medical assistance. Other TxPEP research suggests self-induction may be more common in Texas compared to other states. This is the first time a statistic on self-induction in the general population has ever been calculated. Read the full release here.

Family Planning Funds Shift, Physicians May Not Be Ready


Survey research has shown that most Texas family physicians (79%) were not aware of recent changes to the state family planning budget, and 65% had not heard of funding structures such as the Texas Women’s Health Program (TWHP) that direct family planning funds to primary healthcare providers offering care to low-income Texas women. Provision of contraception among this sample of Texas family physicians varied, with very few offering the most effective methods for preventing unwanted pregnancies such as intrauterine devices (IUDs) or the contraceptive implant (18% and 11%, respectively). Provision of comprehensive contraception is likely a new role for many of these physicians who were previously able to refer patients to specialized family planning clinics such as Planned Parenthood that have either been cut off from state funds or closed due to funding restrictions. Read the full release here

Abortion Wait Times in Texas (10/5/2015)

The amount of time women have to wait before they can get an appointment at an abortion clinic in Texas has increased, according to research performed by the Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP). Wait times have gotten particularly long in Dallas and Ft. Worth after a large-volume clinic closed in June 2015, with women having to wait up to 20 days on average in these cities. There were 8 facilities providing abortion care in the Dallas-Ft. Worth metropolitan area in April 2013; now there are only 4. Wait times have also been as long as 20 days at some clinics in Austin, while wait times have been stable and short in Houston and San Antonio. Read the full release here.

35 Years of Medical Research Shows Abortion Safety Will Not Improve with HB2 Requirements (9/10/2015)

A systematic review of 57 studies from the past 35 years on abortion safety shows that complications from first-trimester surgical abortion were similar whether the procedure was performed in an office setting or a hospital setting, indicating that neither hospital admitting privileges requirements nor ambulatory surgical center (ASC) requirements, such as those included in Texas’s House Bill 2 (HB2), would improve abortion safety. In fact, complications overall from abortion were rare. 

To read the full release, click here.

Providing Highly Effective Contraception After Childbirth Can Reduce Unintended Pregnancy (6/24/2015)

Half of all pregnancies in the United States are unintended. The majority of these pregnancies occur among women who already have children, and often happen within two years of women giving birth. In a study recently published in the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology, researchers at the TxPEP set out to find out how many women adopted highly effective methods, when they did so postpartum, how much this reduced risk of pregnancy within 18 months of delivery.

To read the full release, click here.

2011 Texas Legislation Lead to Family Planning Clinic Closures, Reduced Services, and Uncertain Future (4/6/15)

Legislation enacted in 2011 by the Texas legislature left large gaps in the reproductive health care safety net for low-income Texas women by cutting funds for family planning and restricting which providers could deliver services. In a recently published study, TxPEP researchers found that 25% of publicly funded family planning clinics in Texas closed in 2011-2013, and the ones that remained opened served 54% of the clients that they had in the previous period. Planned Parenthood affiliates and other specialized family planning providers, which were the targets of the legislation, experienced the largest reductions in services, but other agencies were also adversely affected.

To read the full release, click here.

Tweets Supporting Abortion Rights Came From All Over Texas (7/29/14)

According to a recent study by TxPEP researcher Amanda Jean Stevenson, Twitter users from Texas and beyond posted 1.66 million tweets about Texas Democratic Senator Wendy Davis’s filibuster of the restrictive abortion bill House Bill 2 (HB2).  Ninety-seven percent of the tweets were against the bill and nearly half of the tweets came from users living throughout Texas, representing 192 of its 254 counties.

To read the full release, click here.

Study Finds Texas Women Are Not Receiving the Highly Effective Contraception They Desire (7/25/14)

A recently published paper from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project found that nearly 75% of Texas women surveyed want to use highly effective methods of contraception like the intrauterine device (IUD), contraceptive implant, or sterilization in the postpartum period. However, six months after giving birth, only 27% were using these methods.

To read the full release, click here.

Texas State Abortion Rate Decreases 13 Percent Since Implementation of Restrictive Law (7/23/14)

A new paper from the Texas Policy Evaluation Project demonstrates a 13% decline in the abortion rate in Texas and a sharp reduction in medical abortion since House Bill 2 (HB2) went into effect in November 2013.  The law includes provisions restricting medical abortion, banning most procedures after 20 weeks post-fertilization and requiring physicians to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals.  

To read the full release, click here