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Birth Control & Family Planning
|To protect, promote and improve the health of our community|
Family Planning helps women make decisions about their reproductive health. The health department offers a variety of birth control options. All counseling, education, pregnancy testing, and birth control services are provided with confidentiality. Clients can also choose to have “no home contact” to protect their privacy.
The Health Department provides quality family planning services at an affordable price. Services are charged on a sliding-fee scale based on your income. This means that charges are based on family size and income. Medical cards are accepted. No one is denied service based on ability to pay.
Family Planning services are available by appointment at both Berea and Richmond clinic locations. Please call for an appointment.
Benefits of Family Planning
You Have Options
The Health Department’s nurse practitioners and nurses will work with you to provide education about family planning methods and determine which method fits your lifestyle best. Here’s some basic information about many of the family planning methods available through the Health Department.
Abstinence - Refraining from sexual intercourse, this method is free and available to all. There are no medical side effects, including pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Abstinence is 100% effective.
Condoms - A thin sheath of latex rubber that fits over the penis, the condom prevents sperm from getting inside the woman’s vagina. Condoms may be used with other birth control methods. They are 85-98% effective at preventing pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.
Diaphragm (with spermicide) - A small round rubber cup that is placed over the cervix. Diaphragms keep sperm from reaching the egg, and are 80-95% effective.
Oral contraceptives (the pill) - Birth control pills contain hormones that work by preventing the release of an egg from the ovary each month. They must be taken daily. The Health Department offers many types of birth control pills. They are 97-99.7% effective at preventing pregnancy but do not prevent sexually transmitted diseases.
Contraceptive patch (OrthoEvra) - An adhesive patch that contains the same hormones as birth control pills is placed on the woman’s body. The patch is changed once a week for three weeks. Patches are 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.
DepoProvera - A contraceptive shot is given once every three months. There’s no daily method to remember. DepoProvera is 99.7% effective when used correctly to prevent pregnancy.
IUD (intrauterine device) - A small plastic device, wrapped with natural copper, is inserted into the uterus by a health care provider. IUDs can last for up 10 years, but must be removed by a health care provider. Mirena, which is hormonal, and ParaGard, which is copper, are offered by the health department, and are 97-99% effective at preventing pregnancy.
Vaginal ring (NuvaRing) - A flexible vaginal ring containing hormones release daily to inhibit ovulation. The ring is inserted by the woman herself and remains in place for three weeks. The woman replaces a ring one week later. It is 99% effective at preventing pregnancy if used correctly.
Sterilization - A permanent method available to men and women who do not want children in the future. The male procedure is a vasectomy and involves cutting and tying the tubes that carry sperm. The female procedure is tubal ligation and involves cutting and tying the fallopian tubes. Those wanting services will be referred to local doctors for the procedures. Assistance with payment for sterilizations is available based on need and income. It is 99.5-100% effective for females; and 99.9 -100% effective for males.
Emergency Contraception Pills (ECP) – emergency contraception can be used after contraceptive “accidents,” such as when a condom slips, breaks, or leaks, or when a woman doesn’t use her birth control method correctly. ECP’s should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sex – ideally within 72-120 hours – to prevent pregnancy. ECP’s are available at the Health Department. They are also available at some drug stores.
For more information on family planning services, contact the health department clinic most convenient for you. Please visit the locations page for phone numbers and addresses of MCHD’s health clinics.
Planning before pregnancy
For women who want to become pregnant, our nurse practitioners and nurses can help provide the healthiest possible start for a new baby. They have information about reducing health risks, such as tobacco and alcohol use. They can also provide information about Folic Acid, a B vitamin that reduces the risks of birth defects of the brain and spinal cord, including Spina Bifida and anecephaly. Multivitamins with Folic Acid are available for purchase as part of family planning and women’s health visits.
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