Upstream eliminates barriers at health centers that prevent a woman from obtaining the birth control method of her choice, improving outcomes for parents, children, and society.
Out of 6 million pregnancies in the US each year, nearly 3 million are unplanned. Unplanned pregnancy can have negative health effects for women and their babies, including delayed prenatal care, postpartum depression, and premature birth. These outcomes are associated with increased health challenges over the course of a child’s life, higher dropout rates among young mothers, and very low rates of college completion, all of which can impact economic opportunity, educational attainment and upward mobility for both parents and their children.
Barriers to Access
Close to half of all unplanned pregnancies occur to women using a birth control method that doesn’t work well for them. Our work focuses on addressing the reasons that many women don’t have access to the full range of contraception, including:
- Lack of trained providers
- Misinformation and poor patient counseling
- Not screening patients for pregnancy intentions
- Requiring multiple appointments
- Health center billing and coding errors
- Patient cost concerns
“I had absolutely no idea of how involved Upstream would become in the inner workings of our health center, how connected they would become to our staff and providers and to the mission of the center, and how they would keep such a high energy level for the goals all the way through.”
— Dr. Tracy Kedian, Associate Medical Director for Perinatal Services, Family Health Center of Worcester