Weintraub: Find the care you need | SteamboatToday.com

Weintraub: Find the care you need

Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains (PPRM) empowers people to make informed decisions about their sexual and reproductive health by providing high quality health care, comprehensive sex education and strategic advocacy.

For nearly 100 years, we have been a trusted and compassionate provider of reproductive health information and medical services. The Steamboat Springs Health Center strives to make family planning, sexually transmitted infection (STI) screening and treatment, as well as basic health services like life-saving cancer screenings, more accessible and affordable.

Our patients drive our mission and continually motivate us to provide services to the communities we serve. We provide critical and life-saving services to everyone, regardless of income, nationality or language barriers. We care, no matter what.

The Affordable Care Act mandates that insurance companies cover most forms of birth control; however, the deductible or other out-of-pocket costs may still be too high for some to receive the care they need at a cost they can afford.

A young mother made an appointment to receive an intrauterine device (IUD), thinking that the cost would be covered by her medical insurance. But once our staff verified her insurance, we had to tell her that her unmet high deductible would require her to pay for this service. IUDs have a high upfront cost when not covered by insurance or Medicaid and, unfortunately, the cost for this highly effective birth control method was so expensive she couldn’t afford it.

Additional conversation revealed a hectic work and home schedule, and a daily birth control method like the pill was challenging to maintain with regularity, leaving her vulnerable to an unplanned pregnancy. Luckily, thanks to the support of a local donor, the Steamboat Springs Health Center was able to cover most of the cost of an IUD and provided a payment plan for the remainder, ensuring this young woman could care for herself and her children.

While women comprise the majority of our patients, many men also rely on our services. Recently, a young uninsured male patient heard about our GYT campaign – Get Yourself Tested/Get Yourself Talking and visited our Steamboat Springs Health Center to receive STI testing.

The two-day campaign, conducted each year in April, offers discounted testing ($20) for chlamydia, gonorrhea and HIV, typically a $120 visit. Because of the significantly reduced cost, this young man was able to add on other STI testing, as well as some basic health screening tests, for a total out-of-pocket amount much lower than many other providers can offer.

We invite you to visit our website at pprm.org to learn more about our services and like us on Facebook to stay up-to-date with programs such as GYT. The Steamboat Health Center is open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and every first and third Saturday, with extended hours one night each week to provide scheduling flexibility for our patients who work during the day. To help ensure that patients receive the care they need when it is most convenient for them, the health center also sees patients for most of our services on a walk-in basis.

Jeanne Weintraub

Manager, Steamboat Springs and Granby health centers

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Steamboat and Routt County make the Steamboat Pilot & Today’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.