A Step Ahead Foundation Expands to East Tennessee To Provide Women With Access to Long Acting, Reversible Contraceptives

A Step Ahead Foundation of East Tennessee (ASAFET) provides the women of Knoxville with the opportunity to choose if and when she will have a baby and under what circumstances by providing access to free long acting, reversible contraception (LARC), the most effective reversible method of birth control.

“Launched in Memphis, A Step Ahead provides free long-acting reversible birth control (LARC) and transportation to any woman requesting this option regardless of means or ability to pay. A Step Ahead is a prevention-focused organization that assists women in obtaining access to contraception,” said ASAFET Board Member Nikki Zite, MD. “Long acting reversible contraception has been shown to decrease the undesired pregnancy rate in several cities throughout the United States when barriers to access were reduced. Overall, planned pregnancies are healthier and we are hopeful that with less unplanned pregnancies in East Tennessee we can reduce the rate of many preventable forms of infant and maternal morbidity including preterm birth and Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome.”

The National Health Statistics reports that unintended births are at elevated risk of adverse social, economic, and health outcomes for the mother and the child. ASAFET aims to improve educational, economic, and health outcomes for women and children in East Tennessee by providing access to long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) including “Well Woman” testing and transportation. ASAFET has 3 main programs that are working to serve the vulnerable throughout our community: Graduate First, Breaking Barriers and Empowering Women at Risk & Reducing N.A.S.

“The diagnosis of neonatal abstinence syndrome doesn’t imply and shouldn’t be taken to indicate that an affected newborn’s…

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