The Women's Health Center of Duluth - providing medically safe, confidential, affordable, reproductive & sexual health care for 37 years!
Women's Health Center of Duluth (WHC) is a reproductive and sexual health care non-profit organization providing medical and preventative services in Northeastern Minnesota. WHC has three clinic sites, located in Carlton, Koochiching and St. Louis counties. WHC was established in April 1981 through grants and funding from the McKnight Foundation and Midwest Health Center for Women to provide medical and reproductive health care services to women and men. In 1983, WHC became an independent 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, and currently is the last independent non-profit abortion clinic in Minnesota. The WHC is located in the Building for Women, which is owned by a partnership between three non-profit agencies; the Women's Health Center (WHC), General Partner, Program to Aid Victims of Sexual Assault (PAVSA), General Partner and the Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA), Limited Partner. A thirteen-member Board of Directors govern WHC. The Executive Director, Laurie Casey, oversees the clinic operations, finances, fundraising, planning and community relations. The Mission of the Women’s Health Center “is to provide, advance and advocate for evidence-based reproductive and sexual health care for all.” WHC vision is that "Every individual controls their own sexual and reproductive health."
All clinic sites provide access to preventative screenings, pregnancy confirmation and contraceptive management. In 2018, WHC also expanded its care to include LGBTQ and hormone therapy for transgender individuals. In addition to these services, the Duluth site provides pregnancy termination services and is the only provider north of the Twin Cities metro area to provide abortion services. As the only reproductive and sexual health care provider in Northeastern Minnesota, the availability of WHC services ensures access for the patient population.
WHC provided 317 STI screenings and 123 long-term reversible contraceptives (LARC's), both IUD and implantable devices, dispersed 144 emergency contraceptives and 6400 condoms in 2016. One-fifth of WHC patients receive a LARC. Providing free or low-cost birth control, especially LARCS, contributes to declining abortion rates in NE Minnesota.
WHC receives Family Planning Special Projects funding from the Minnesota Department of Health, and has been providing the only subsidized family planning services in 3 of the 4 counties since 1982. Family planning services were provided to over 380 individuals in Carlton, Cook, Koochiching and St. Louis counties in 2016. WHC provides outreach services onsite at area organizations that serve high-risk clientele, such as a homeless youth drop-in center and a women’s chemical dependency treatment center. STI education is also provided monthly at an adolescent mental health out-patient treatment center.
WHC currently has four Insure Duluth Coalition, MNsure Navigators who assisted in enrolling 526 individuals in Medical Assistance, MinnesotaCare or a Qualified Health Plan from July 2015 - July 2017 through the MNsure marketplace. In addition, direct outreach was provided to 2,069 individuals and assistance provided to 1,500 individuals. WHC MNsure Navigators are funded through a grant from the state of Minnesota, led by Generations Health Care Initiatives.
Current Services & Programs:
· Medical Abortion up to 70 days (the abortion pill)
· In-Clinic Abortion up to 15.6 weeks
· Pregnancy Testing
· Pregnancy Options Education
· Emergency Contraception
· Affordable Birth Control
· Experienced I.U.D. & Nexplanon insertion
· UTI/STI testing, treatment & education
· HIV Testing
· On-site MNsure Navigators
I.U.D.’s, Nexplanon, birth control, Depo, Plan B and condoms: WHC provides many common methods. WHC is currently offering FREE emergency contraception to Minnesota residents through funding from MDH Family Planning Special Projects grants.SAGE Screening Program: The WHC contracts with the MDH SAGE Screening Program to provide screening for breast and cervical cancer for women 40 years