For Release:

Statement from NJ Department of Health In Response to Comments Made by Phil Murphy

The claim made that women are dying due to reduced funding for family planning services is flat out untrue. In fact, the death rate of women of childbearing age has been decreasing in New Jersey, due in part to investments made by the Christie Administration in women’s health including Medicaid expansion, community health centers, and cancer prevention and screening. The death rate of women of child bearing age (15-44) has declined from 65.9 per 100,000 in 2009 to 62.6 in 2015, the latest year for which data is available. To say otherwise is irresponsible.

More than 145,700 women of child bearing age have benefited from increased access to women’s health services since Governor Christie expanded Medicaid. In addition, the Department of Health annually provides $30 million to reimburse community health centers for comprehensive health services, $13 million for cancer screening and prevention, $5.7 million in STD (Sexual Transmitted Diseases) testing and prevention and $2.1 million in family planning services in all 21 counties. In addition, family planning clinics in New Jersey receive $8.4 million in federal Title X funds.

The facts are that STD rates are increasing across the nation. Yet, New Jersey STD rates remain below the national average. The Department of Health is continuing its STD prevention and public education campaigns. Despite CDC cuts, which the CDC has acknowledged as a factor in rising rates, the Department has increased STD funding over the past two years.

Last Reviewed: 8/10/2017