ACOG in the News: What’s Really At Stake In The Planned Parenthood Debate and Many Women May Tune out Mammogram Confusion

ACOG serves as an expert information source about women’s health for consumers and the media. The organization’s Office of Communications regularly receives media inquiries from newspapers, magazines, websites, radio, and TV broadcast outlets. In many cases, ACOG officers and members talk with the media, working with the Office of Communications. Here are several recent articles that prominently featured ACOG guidance and experts. We’ve included excerpts and links to the original articles.

NPR Women Still Need Folic Acid Supplements To Prevent Birth Defects

For some women, eating fortified foods may do the job, but for others that may not be enough, says Joseph Biggio, who chairs the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' Committee on Genetics. "It's highly diet-dependent," he says. Women on gluten-free or low-carb diets may not be eating fortified grain products. Nor may many be getting enough sources of folate, the naturally occurring version of vitamin B9, including dark, leafy green vegetables, beef liver and beans.


Refinery29 What’s Really At Stake In The Planned Parenthood Debate

“The closure of Planned Parenthood clinics would be gravely disappointing and damaging for patients and health care providers, alike,” says the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologist’s Executive Vice President and CEO, Hal Lawrence, MD. “For women’s health-care providers, the closure of Planned Parenthood clinics would put immense pressure on existing private and unaffiliated public practices to accommodate an even larger population of patients. Increased demands on fewer practices affects patients by making it more difficult to see doctors quickly, particularly for routine visits, or delaying screening results as the volume increases, and staff struggle to keep up with the pace.”


The Cut New Trump Health-Care Policy Staffer Thinks Birth Control Causes Miscarriage and Abortions

In January 2015, Talento published an article in The Federalist, in which she talked about the risks of birth control. Some of them are known in the medical community, such as the risk of cardiovascular claims; other claims she made were completely inaccurate, such as linking birth control to miscarriages.

Per Talking Points Memo:

“Preventing a fertilized egg (i.e. after conception) from hunkering down in the wall of the uterus, where it can grow normally,” she wrote. “Progestin in birth control thins the endometrial lining (uterine wall), but a fertilized egg needs a thick, fluffy, blood-rich uterine wall to attach to and begin growth. Without it, the embryo can’t survive, and a miscarriage occurs.”

However, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists says that there is no link between miscarriages and taking birth control before pregnancy. Talento also claimed that birth control can cause fertility problems, citing one 2012 study. But in reality, the majority of similar studies and medical experts have found that there is no link between taking birth control and having trouble getting pregnant later on.


UPI Pregnancy OK for most women with congenital heart conditions: Report

All women with "high-risk" heart conditions should deliver at a larger medical center with heart specialists, surgeons, anesthesiologists and obstetricians who have the necessary expertise, the AHA said.

"That team-based approach is critical," said Dr. Yasser Yehia El-Sayed, vice chair of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' Committee on Obstetric Practice.

Slate The House of Representatives Just Passed a Health Care Bill That’s Actually Good for Women

The Improving Access to Maternity Care Act is a bipartisan bill that would require the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to identify regional shortages of maternity health professionals around the country.

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Midwifery Certification Board, in 2013 there were only four OB-GYNs, certified nurse midwives, or certified midwives for every 10,000 women over the age of 15 in the United States. Unsurprisingly, the effects of this shortage are felt most keenly by those living in sparsely populated states and rural areas. A study from the American College of Nurse-Midwives found that 46 percent of U.S. counties have no OB-GYNs and 56 percent have no nurse-midwives.


USAToday Many women may tune out mammogram confusion

Many women "are sick of the headlines" and are not making decisions around them, said Barbara Levy, vice president of health policy at the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Levy, who sees patients at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., said “most women in this country continue to believe that more testing is better,” even when science says otherwise.


MedPageToday Pregnancy Soon After Abortion Ups Risk of Preterm Birth

The new study examined data from 19,894 women in the Finnish Register of Induced Abortions, who both underwent a termination of pregnancy and went on to have a subsequent live birth. Overall, the median interpregnancy interval was 21 months -- although 45% of the sample waited 24 months or longer to conceive again, followed by 16.1% who waited 6 to 12 months, and 14.9% who waited less than 6 months.

In a podcast released to the media, Nancy Chescheir, MD, editor-in-chief of Obstetrics & Gynecology, characterized the paper as "particularly useful," because patients frequently raise the question about whether pregnancy termination increases risks in the next pregnancy.


USNews 7 Things You Need to Know If You’re Pregnant With Twins

The risk of many potential pregnancy complications – including preterm delivery, cesarean birth, pre-eclampsia (a blood pressure disorder) and gestational diabetes – is elevated among women carrying multiples, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. That's why you need to be especially careful about following your OB-GYN's recommendations for visits, screenings and other care. "With that extra diligence, we can hopefully keep risks of adverse outcomes at a minimum," Devine says.


HuffingtonPost OB-GYN Group Issues Major New Cord Clamping Recommendation

More and more research has said there are benefits to keeping the umbilical cord attached for several minutes after childbirth ― a practice known as “delayed cord clamping.” But the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has held off from endorsing the practice, saying there was insufficient evidence to support it universally.

This week ACOG issued new guidelines changing its stance. In the first policy opinion on the topic issued since 2012, the group now recommends that doctors and midwives hold off on clamping all healthy newborns’ cords for at least 30 to 60 seconds.

“While there are various recommendations regarding optimal timing for delayed umbilical cord clamping, there has been increased evidence that shows that the practice in and of itself has clear health benefits for both [all] infants,” Dr. Maria Mascola, lead author of the new ACOG opinion, wrote in a press release. “And, in most cases, this does not interfere with early care, including drying and stimulating for the first breath and immediate skin-to-skin contact.”


Reuters YouTube videos on contraceptive implants mostly accurate, mostly positive

“It is good for women to be curious and well informed about their birth control choices, and the internet can offer some information to start with,” said Dr. Molly Findley, a fellow with The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) who wasn’t involved in the study.

“However, ultimately it comes down to a conversation between a woman and her doctor because women experience contraception in all kinds of different ways and no one will have an identical experience,” Findley said by email.


American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
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