State funding expanded to women’s healthcare agencies in East Texas

NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - East Texas Community Health Services joins 54 other agencies across the state in receiving a share of $100-million in new state funding. It's earmarked for women's health services. To qualify a specific requirement had to be met.

"Pretty broad program, but there is an expectation that at least 60% of the women we serve under this program will have family planning," said Robin Moore, East Texas Community Health Center Director.

East Texas Community Health Services devotes one quarter of its facility to women's care. It isn't out of the ordinary at this clinic to provide contraceptives and the advice that goes with it.

"We're already doing that. I think it's just encourages everyone else who is taking advantage of that grant to do that," said Dr. James Koerner, Medical Director, Doctor of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Health providers say the demand for family planning services is up regionally following the closure of Planned Parenthood in Lufkin.

"With Planned Parenthood in Lufkin having to retrench so much, you know, the women in this area still need family planning services, and so we hope to be there to serve them," said Moore.

Other vital services will be provided including testing for sexually transmitted diseases. The goal is enable women the family planning and screening services they need to be healthy.

"Well the trickle down effect is that we don't have to spend as much money take care of sick moms and sick babies. It allows us to do a better job for everybody," said Koerner.

East Texas community health services received $347,000. Angelina County and city district got $570,000. It's a five year renewable grant.

Copyright 2014 KTRE. All rights reserved.