The published Title X Final Rule “Ensuring Access to Equitable, Affordable, Client-Centered, Quality Family Planning Services” is effective as of today, November 8, 2021. Under the Final Rule, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Population Affairs (OPA) amended the Title X Family Planning regulations.
According to the OPA, these new 2021 regulations reinforce the program’s central tenets of quality, equity, and dignity for all individuals who seek Title X services and modernize the more than 50-year-old program to better reflect the current healthcare system.
The 2021 Final Rule revokes the 2019 Final Rule adopted during the Trump administration, “Compliance With Statutory Program Integrity Requirements,” in its entirety and readopts the 2000 Final Rule, “Standards of Compliance for Abortion-Related Services in Family Planning Services Projects,” with certain revisions. For example, under the amended regulations:
- all family planning services must be delivered consistent with nationally recognized standards of care;
- eliminate the requirement established under the 2019 Title X Final Rule for providers to maintain strict physical and financial separation of abortion services; and
- restore the requirement for nondirective pregnancy options counseling (inclusive of prenatal care and delivery; infant care, foster care, or adoption; and pregnancy termination) and referral upon request.
OPA announced a Title X Family Planning Service Grant Notice of Funding Opportunity, with applications due January 11, 2022. The estimated total Program funding is $256,000,000.
Organizations considering applying for the Title X grant, as well as current Title X grantees, subrecipeints, and contractors, should closely review the amended regulations.