Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Prescribe Fordham 2!: Fordham’s Off-Campus Birth Control Clinic Night Returns

Attendees must RSVP at this link!

Prescribe Fordham 2!:  Fordham’s Off-Campus Birth Control Clinic Night Returns

On October 24th from 6:00 to 9:30, a coalition of Fordham University student groups and academic departments will hold a birth control clinic and sexual health fair blocks from the school’s Lincoln Center campus, at the John Jay College Conference Center at 524 W. 59th Street.

Fordham University prohibits medical providers at its health centers from prescribing birth control and has an unwritten policy forbidding the distribution of condoms on campus.  Fordham attributes these policies to its Catholic-affiliation. Though Fordham receives New York State funding on the basis of representations that it is non-denominational, medical care at Fordham is governed by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishop's Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services.

At Prescribe Fordham 2!, students can consult with uncensored doctors from the Institute for Family Health about reproductive health and disease prevention.  After a medical screening and blood pressure check, the Family Institute doctors can prescribe contraceptives to students or advise them about long-acting contraceptive methods. 

Fordham student insurance covers contraceptives as required by the New York Women’s Health and Wellness Act.  Now, thanks to the Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”), students with Fordham insurance can receive a gynecological exam off-campus from a medical provider who is under no religiously-based constraints without paying a co-payment.  While this is a significant improvement for our insured students, access to contraception remains a problem for Fordham students who lack insurance (an estimated 35% according to the administration) or a doctor in New York.  The Fordham health center policies are particularly problematic for students at Fordham’s Rose Hill campus due to the prevalence of “Crisis Pregnancy Centers” in the Bronx, which present themselves as family planning clinics but do not provide contraception or medical care and are known to advertise on campus.  

Fordham administrators and health center staff assert there is a health exception to the prescription ban, but in practice students have been turned away even with records of serious medical conditions. The administration has declined to explain what conditions justify treatment, of what severity, and who makes this determination.  Many students seek health services at Planned Parenthood, taking up resources needed by uninsured and low-income patients.

Prescribe Fordham 2! is a way for members of the Fordham community to work around the expense and inconvenience that result from the University’s policies and make unknowing students aware that the University provides non-standard healthcare.  It is also an opportunity to discuss the significant influence on women’s health of Catholic leaders outside the Catholic mainstream.  

The event is sponsored by the Fordham Chapter of Law Students for Reproductive Justice, Fordham OUTlaws, The Institute for Women and Girls at the Graduate School of Social Service, The Women's Studies Department at Lincoln Center, The Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Lincoln Center, and the Leitner Center for International Law and Justice, the Women’s Center at John Jay College and the Reproductive Health Access Project.  It is also open to students of John Jay College, the New York Institute of Technology, Seton Hall University, and St. John’s University. Students of other schools who wish to attend should email

For more information, email or visit

Attendees must RSVP  here.


  1. Dont provide health services to the planned parenthood, because it increases the abortion rate.
    Womens Health 

  2. In reguards to this event, my experience in obtaining birth control has not been an obstacle by any means. I am under my parent’s health insurance so it has not been a hassle by any means in order for me to obtain contraceptives. What I can say as an undergraduate student would be that if I did not have insurance under my parents, I would have no clue as to how to obtain birth control because I certainly do not think my institution makes women’s birth control such a priority. I receive daily emails about upcoming club events, concerts, tickets to Broadway shows, dances, student council advertisements, etc. But, hardly ever anything about women’s issues, such as the ability to become educated on what it means to have health insurance, and being provided with everything from medicine to birth control. This is an issue that should be brought up more often on campus because, besides the recent event with Fordham Law school on Human Reproductive Rights, that was held at John Jay College of Criminal Justice on October 24th, I have never seen an advertisement or event for the cause of women’s reproductive rights. Women should be taken much more in to consideration because we are important human beings. I think this event definetly took a step forward in making women a priorty.