Planned Parenthood of Collier County provides access to quality and comprehensive healthcare for women throughout their lives, from teenage years to post menopause. In fact 98% of what our clinic does includes cervical and breast cancer screenings, sexually transmitted infection testing and support, well women exams, birth control options, and menopausal healthcare.
However, on March 5, 2014, Ash Wednesday, there were a record number of protesters outside our doors. Over 200 hundred community members, middle school students, teachers, priests, nuns, and others who are anti-women’s health, stood outside our clinic to place judgment on our patients. While they have the right to do this by law, it is important for each person in our community to respect another person’s opinion on any issue.
We will continue to serve our patients from all areas of our service area including Collier, Glades, and Hendry Counties to ensure that everyone has access to healthcare regardless of ethnicity, nationality, race, gender, and sexual orientation. Our staff is committed to our mission and proud to provide the services we provide through payments from patients, grants, and our wonderful donors. We also are grateful to have our volunteers who committed 614 hours of their time in the past year.
On Saturday, March 8, International Women’s Day, Planned Parenthood will respond to a call from the UN for people around the world to define the #WorldWeWant with messages in support of women and young people’s sexual and reproductive health and rights. (Spoiler: In the world we want, access to health care doesn’t depend on your zip code. Or your gender. Or your sexual identity. Or the language you speak. Or the color of your skin.)
World We Want Manifesto
This is the world we want:
A world where access to health care doesn’t depend on your postal code. Or your gender. Or your sexual identity. Or the language you speak. Or the color of your skin.
A world where politicians don’t come between a woman and her health care provider.
A world where girls are just as likely as boys to stay in school, go after the jobs they want, and become leaders in their communities.
A world with no new HIV infections and where those living with HIV are able to make decisions about their health and lives, just like anybody else.
A world where young people are empowered and trusted with information about sex — so they can prevent unintended pregnancy and protect themselves from STDs.
A world where all people have equal protection and equal benefit under the law.
A world that is free of stigma, discrimination, and violence.
A world where reproductive rights are recognized as human rights.
A world that acknowledges that the only way forward is to protect and expand these rights.
A world where all people control their own bodies and their own destinies.
Valentine’s Day marked the beginning of Planned Parenthood’s annual “National Condom Week,” an advocacy effort to promote healthy sexual habits. In celebration, we passed out free condoms, safer sex informational materials and Valentine’s Day candy at a local watering hole, promoting safer sex is better sex!
Women and men need to feel empowered and advocate for safer sex. The U.S. has the highest rate of sexually transmitted infections in the developed world; do you want to be part of the statistic? We know talking about safer sex with your partner can be difficult. But it’s important to communicate. Develop a plan and practice what you will say to your partner. Don’t be shy about communicating your needs and feelings. Send a message that condom use is essential every single time you have sex. A partner, who respects you, respects your health and their health as well.
Today there are so many different types of condoms… why not have some fun and experiment with all the varieties from glow-in-the-dark, flavored, studded, warming, pleasure shaped, kiss of mint, colored and latex free are just naming a few!
Although we are now at the end of “National Condom Week”, we encourage people to use condoms every time they have sex! Condoms are a good way to feel more relaxed about your sex life. Many people say they find sex more enjoyable when they use condoms because they aren’t worrying about STDs or unintended pregnancy. Come into our health center for free condoms and education on safer sex!
On this day, 97 years ago Margaret Sanger opened the nation’s first family planning clinic in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn. Women lined up for birth control information. Nine days later, Sanger was arrested for violating the Comstock obscenity laws, which banned dissemination of information about contraception. Although the clinic was shut down a movement that revolutionized women’s ability to plan their families, improve their health and pursue their dreams was born. In 1923 Sanger opened the Birth Control Clinical Research Bureau in Manhattan, later known as the Margaret Sanger Research Bureau, where physicians dispensed contraceptives and studied their health impact. A few years later Sanger assisted by courageous and prominent New Yorkers, opened additional clinics in Manhattan and the Bronx. Then known as “Mothers’ Health Centers,” they later became branches of Planned Parenthood. Because of Sanger’s courage and determination, Planned Parenthood has become a place for over three million people each year in need of high quality, affordable health care. Planned Parenthood has been able to grow to so much more then birth control, covering a wide range of preventive health care services including lifesaving cancer screenings, testing and treatment for STIs, and health education and information. We are proud to keep moving forward, not roll back, on women’s health. Thank you Margaret for all you have done for women’s health.
In celebration of World Vasectomy Day, Planned Parenthood of Collier County hosts a viewing of the newly released documentary, “The Vasectomist” featuring the world’s most prolific vasectomist Dr. Doug Stein. Vasectomies are a viable family planning option and Planned Parenthood of Collier County is the leading provider of affordable vasectomies in our community.
Dr. Doug Stein a Florida-based urologist, as well as Planned Parenthood of Collier County’s vasectomist, has devoted his life to “speaking the gospel of vasectomy”. He believes that for sexually active heterosexual men who no longer want to have children, getting a vasectomy is their best option. Dr. Stein has performed over 30,000 vasectomies throughout the US, Asia, Africa and the Caribbean.
Part dreamer and part visionary, Dr. Stein is committed to the impossible quest of lowering population on the planet, one vasectomy at a time. As he travels the world, Doug confronts the difficult ethical questions surrounding birth control and the reluctance of men to be involved in family planning.
“The Vasectomist” shares these difficult and divisive issues, crossing cultural, religious and political taboos. The film provokes a new conversation about over-population, over-consumption and the planet’s environmental tipping point.
Please join us October 29, 2013, as we view the documentary “The Vasectomist”, enjoy wine and cheese and comments from Dr. Doug Stein at Naples United Church of Christ, 4:30pm. Seating is limited and reservations are required. Tickets are $25 a person, please call 239-262-8923 ext. 300 to reserve your seat!
Women, we all have them… so why be scared of them!
Whether you have big, small, flat, saggy, perky, saline or silicone it’s so important that you take care of the breasts you have. Breast cancer is a serious health concern. After skin cancer, it’s the most common type of cancer among American women. About 230,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year in the U.S. and 40,000 women will die from it. In Florida an estimated 11,850 new cases of breast cancer in women will be diagnosed.
Breast cancer screenings, such as breast exams or mammograms help to detect cancer in its earliest, most treatable stage. These breast cancer detection tools can save lives. Some women may put off breast cancer screenings. They may be afraid of being diagnosed with breast cancer, they might not know they should be screened, they may have a hard time finding the right health care provider, or they may have concerns about the exams. It’s important not to let these fears and concerns get in the way of your health because knowledge is power!
Breast self-awareness is an important part of a woman’s breast health. This includes knowing what your risks are for breast cancer as well as knowing what is normal for your breasts. At Planned Parenthood of Collier County we offer education, counseling and referrals based on a woman’s risk for breast cancer along with financial help to those who qualify for discounted or free diagnostic or screening mammograms. Call to make your breast health screening appointment today, 239-262-0301!
A few weeks ago during a very overdue “girls’ night” my friend started to cry when taking about her recent Pap test results. She is a single mother with no insurance, and was told she had precancerous cells. She was told that she would need a LEEP treatment in order to stop the precancerous cells from turning into cancer cells or spread. The cost with her OBGYN was astronomical and she had no idea how she would be able to afford it.
After consoling her, she discussed further how Medicaid rejected her and her son from coverage because “she made too much money”. For her and her very active four year old, paying the bills was a stretch each month and to add the cost of private insurance was just not feasible. She was scared that she would never be able to come with the money and the “unknown” of what could happen frightened her and myself.
Once I heard this I did a little research. I came to work the next morning and checked out our pricing for LEEP treatments and was overwhelmed with the price difference from her OBGYN office and our clinic. I called her immediately squealing, yes that’s right squealing, that we could offer this to her at such a low cost and she could get this done and leave all of this stress behind her. She cried on the phone and couldn’t thank me enough. I cried back to her, “This is what we stand for, what we are here for and this is why I come to work every day and fight to keep our doors open.”
I can’t even begin to think, if we weren’t here offering these services what would happen to not only my friend but women all over the country. Because of our work and dedication there is now no question “To ‘LEEP’ or not to ‘LEEP’”.