More Men Using Family Planning Services
Trend suggests increase, but men still a small percentage of family planning users
More men are visiting Title X Family Planning Program sites, according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the HHS Office of Population Affairs (OPA) in observance of June’s Men’s Health Month.
From 2003 through 2014, a total of 3.8 million men visited Title X service sites in the 50 states and District of Columbia. The percentage of male clients nearly doubled from 4.5 percent (221,425 males) in 2003 to 8.8 percent (362,531 males) in 2014.
“The growing trend in men’s use of family planning services is very encouraging,” said Wanda Barfield, director of CDC’s Division of Reproductive Health. “Men have family planning needs that not only have implications for their sexual and reproductive health, but also can have an impact on their overall health.”
Since it was established in 1970, the National Title X Family Planning Program has supported the delivery of cost-effective and confidential family planning and related preventive health care with priority for services to low-income women and men. In 2014, about 4 million clients, more than 90 percent of whom were female, were served through approximately 4,100 Title X-funded service sites.
“Title X-funded sites provide a broad range of services, patient education, and referrals that are important in meeting the family planning needs of both male and female clients,” said Susan Moskosky, acting director of OPA. “OPA has actively worked to increase the number of males who use Title X services by funding projects and trainings during the past 15 years to improve outreach and appropriate male-centered service delivery.”
In 2014, CDC and OPA released the recommendations, Providing Quality Family Planning Services, which outlined family planning services for men including education and counseling on a range of issues related to preventing or achieving pregnancy, including preconception, infertility, contraception, and sexually transmitted disease (STD) care.
In 2014, male users of Title X family planning services were diverse in age, race/ethnicity, and geography:
- Approximately one-third (35 percent) were non-Hispanic white, 28 percent were Hispanic or Latino, and 24 percent were black.
- Nearly half (49 percent) were age 20-29 years, 20 percent were age 30-39, and 14 percent were age 15-19.
- The percentage of clients that were male also varied widely from state to state, from 1 percent or less in Tennessee, Mississippi, and Alabama to 27.2 percent in the District of Columbia.
Although far fewer men than women seek family planning and related services at Title X clinics, the number of men seeking these services is rapidly increasing. Health care settings that include family planning can adapt a client-centered, male-focused approach to better meet the health needs of males