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  • Teen Pregnancy and Abortion Rates See Big Drops, Which Colorado Officials Attribute to IUD Program Denver Post by Jennifer Brown — The steep drop in teen pregnancies and abortions in Colorado since 2009 is mainly due to one thing: free, low-cost access to IUDs. Intrauterine devices — tiny, T-shaped pieces of plastic placed in the uterus — are the main reason Colorado's teen birth rate fell 54 percent and the teen abortion rate declined 64 percent in the last eight years, state health officials said Thursday. The astounding numbers, capturing the eight-year period since IUDs became an affordable option for low-income health clinics, were released along with a study estimating the state avoided paying nearly $70 million for labor and delivery, well-baby check-ups, food stamps , and child-care assistance because of fewer births to teen moms. "This is one of the biggest public-health home runs that I've seen in my 35-year public-health career," said Dr. John Douglas, executive director of the Tri-County Health Department, which has six clinics in Douglas, Arapahoe and Adams counties. "The work that's happened is really striking." Thanks to a grant from billionaire Warren Buffett's family, Colorado spent $28 million during eight years supplying IUDs to 75 public health clinics throughout the state, several based inside high schools. From 2009 to 2016, the program provided 43,713 contraceptive implants to women, plus trained medical staff on how to insert the devices.

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