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Early survey results show 63 percent oppose contraceptives on campus

Results of a survey on the Tigard-Tualatin School District website show that most people are opposed to allowing the district's on-campus health center disperse birth control to students and staff.

For weeks the School Based Health Center's advisory board has been seeking public input on the idea.

If approved, a nurse practitioner at the health center would be able to write prescriptions for birth control or dispense condoms to any student who lives within the Tigard-Tualatin boundaries.

The clinic is open to all students living in the Tigard-Tualatin School District and is self-supported financially through sliding scale fees, private health insurance and the Oregon Health Plan.

So far, the four-question survey - which will remain open until 5 p.m., Friday, Feb. 10 - show about 63 percent of residents are opposed to the idea.

According to the district, about 400 people have taken the survey, including parents, students and community members.

Located on the campus of Tigard High School, the district opted not to supply contraceptives when the health center opened in 2008, but said it would revisit the subject after the health center had gotten off its feet.

Last month the school board's health center advisory board announced that it would seek community input about the idea before deciding whether or not to bring the idea before the school board.

Opinions have differed at the district's two public meetings on the subject.

The health center advisory board will meet this month to discuss the survey's results, as well as the public comments from the two open meetings.

The advisory board could send the matter to the school board as early as March, advisory board members said.

One of three school-based health clinics in Washington County, the clinic sees hundreds of students every year and provides services including diagnosing and treating minor illnesses and infections, offering health screenings, immunizations, physical examinations, mental health assessments, counseling and family support and providing substance abuse assessments.

Students can also receive reproductive health exams, pregnancy and HIV tests and counseling and treatment for sexually transmitted infections at the health center, which are requirements for all state school-based health centers.

The center currently refers students to other clinics for birth control prescriptions.

Under state law, students age 15 or older can receive medical care or treatment without parental permission.



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