With the recent Supreme Court rule overturning Roe V. Wade in late June, the choice to restrict accessibility to abortion services are left up to individual state lawmakers to decide.
Although the state of California protects abortion health providers under state law, many incoming and current CSU students may not be aware of the free reproductive health and family planning resources Long Beach State has to offer.
According to BMC Health Services Research, only about 27% of college students have reported access to reproductive health services.
“Sexual health and access to reproductive healthcare is critical for college students and young adults,” said Heidi Girling, health educator at Student Health Services and coordinator at the Office of Health and Wellness Promotion. “Sexual health is one of our main pillars because this is a time where students are exploring their sexual identity and their orientation.”
The Student Health Services on-campus clinic provides free birth control options such as condoms, birth control pills, NuvaRing, Nexplanon implant and more. Other free reproductive health resources are also offered such as STI testing and treatment, pelvic and pap exams, Plan B, HIV testing, and sexual reproductive health counseling visits and workshops.
These resources are all offered through Family P.A.C.T., a program that provides family planning services to low-income California residents without health insurance as well as those who seek care with privacy concerns.
“Over the many years that I have been a pregnancy options counselor, I’ve noticed that students feel very worried that they’re going to be judged for their choice, whatever it is, which isn’t the case. It’s their choice, it’s their decision,” Girling said.
The clinic also provides prenatal care resources such as free pregnancy tests, pregnancy options counseling, prenatal care tests and classes, ultrasounds and high-risk pregnancy care.
The department also has a pharmacy in which students can pick up any medication prescribed by the nurses during their visits.
“If you ever hear anything concerning, please encourage your friends to contact us because we definitely want to address the issues right away,” said Angela Conte, director of operations at Student Health Services.
For more information on eligibility for the Family P.A.C.T. or to set up an appointment with a clinician, contact the Student Health Services at (562)-985-4771.
The Women and Gender Equity Center offers family planning services and programs for students who are pregnant and parenting. They offer on-campus childcare, family study areas, emotional support counseling, lactation and changing rooms, and the CalWORKS program.
For more information on family planning services and programs, contact the WGEC at (562)-985-8576.
CSULB does not currently offer abortion procedures; students in need of abortion services can contact Planned Parenthood at 1-800-230-7526.