Press Releases

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health Celebrates the Birth Control Access Act in Virginia

Press Release
Wilmarie Ríos Jaime Phone: (202) 754-8811 Email:

The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health Celebrates the Birth Control Access Act in Virginia


Washington, D.C. — Governor Terry McAuliffe signed into law HB 2267, The Birth Control Access Act. This important and proactive piece of legislation will require health benefit plans to dispense up to a 12-month supply of oral contraceptives at once to women with a prescription. Currently, most insurance policies limit a woman’s supply of oral contraceptives to one to three months at a time forcing them to make multiple trips to the pharmacy.

Margie Del Castillo, associate director of community mobilization with the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, leading the Virginia Latina Advocacy Network (VA LAN), issued the following statement:

“The Birth Control Access Act marks an important victory for the reproductive justice community and all people in Virginia. This commonsense legislation is a critical step in protecting and expanding women’s health care in Virginia. Studies show that a person who receives a year-long supply of oral contraceptives is more likely to continuously and consistently use their contraceptives, and therefore less likely to experience lapses in their use. Any interruption in the use of oral contraceptives -- even by one day -- can lead to unintended pregnancy.

Women of color and immigrant women are disproportionately represented in physically demanding and low-wage jobs which offer little flexibility. For many Latinas -- whether it is due to a tight and un-flexible work schedule, a lack of access to reliable transportation, or living in a remote area -- receiving only a 30 or 90 day supply of contraception at a time can present a significant obstacle to effective use. Latinas experience higher incidences of unintended pregnancy, are more likely to live in poverty and less likely to be able to afford healthcare out-of-pocket, as well as are more likely to be enrolled in public insurance. The Birth Control Access Act will ensure that women, and others who choose oral contraception as their family planning method, are less likely to experience interruptions in use and will therefore be less likely to experience an unintended pregnancy. This proactive measure will help Latinas plan their families and futures as well as improve their health and wellbeing.”

For more information on NLIRH’s fight for health, dignity and justice, visit us at or follow us on Facebook and Twitter @NLIRH.




The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health is the only national reproductive justice organization dedicated to building Latina power to advance health, dignity, and justice for 28 million Latinas, their families, and communities in the United States through leadership development, community mobilization, policy advocacy, and strategic communications.