A new program designed to expand healthcare access for underserved young women in the City of Binghamton was announced on April 11, 2024.

The announcement came from Binghamton Mayor Jared Kraham along with officials from Family Planning of South Central New York and Excellus BlueCross BlueShield.

During the announcement, it was explained that the City of Binghamton and Excellus BlueCross BlueShield will be funding a new Community Educator and Advocate position at Family Planning that will focus on increasing the number of women ages 16 to 21 who are connected with reproductive medical care, annual exams, and cancer screenings, targeting persons most disconnected from services and social supports, including young women no longer attending school.

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The new Community Educator and Advocate position will also offer comprehensive sexual health education and provide clients with referrals to other medical providers and community-based organizations, such as mental health counseling and educational support, as needed, according to Thursday's announcement.

Funding included $50,000 from the City of Binghamton, from the $1 million youth fund  Mayor Jared Kraham announced in 2022, and Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield will contribute $20,000.

All people should have equal access to reproductive health care. However, the reality is that many do not. This program will provide a safe, affirming, and confidential environment for participants to set personal goals regarding their reproductive health; support to progress towards those goals; and removal of barriers that prevent participants from achieving those goals. - Debra Marcus, Chief Executive Officer of Family Planning of South Central New York, Inc

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