Teenagers in the United States will be required to undergo pregnancy tests under new federal regulations that take effect next month.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is proposing new requirements for testing at 18 and 21 years of age.
The agency has also suggested parents be given access to a pregnancy test kit that can be used to find out if a child has an STD or is at risk of developing a pregnancy complication.
The proposed rule, which has been dubbed the “preventative health plan” (PHP), is aimed at protecting children from the risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections, as well as preventing pregnancies.
It also seeks to help parents keep their homes free of STDs and unsafe environments.
“The PHP has a proven track record of successfully preventing pregnancies and reducing the risk to pregnant women and their babies,” said Dr. Sarah Pappas, a pediatrician at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.
“It’s important to understand the health risks of these practices, and to keep them out of children’s hands.”
While the PHP was enacted under President Donald Trump, the Trump administration has said the rules are needed to protect the public and the safety of women and babies.
The PHG has not been widely implemented, and only about 30 states and the District of Columbia have adopted it.
HHS plans to start using it in the fall.
Under the PHG, health care providers and health care facilities would be required, with the approval of the Department of Labor, to administer a blood test to pregnant patients, in the form of a digital strip or a latex condom.
They would be allowed to prescribe the test to patients, but not for themselves.
The test would also be used for pregnant women who are not at risk for developing a preeclampsia, which can cause a pregnancy.
The test would be used only to find pregnancy, not to determine whether the woman has an STI or has a preexisting condition that might increase her risk of pregnancy.
In addition to the pregnancy test requirement, the PHPs would require a nurse or medical assistant to administer the test.
The nurse or assistant would be authorized to administer it to a patient only if she or he has an education that allows him or her to do so safely.
Patients would be notified about the pregnancy tests’ use and how often they would be administered.HHS has also proposed requiring health care workers who are authorized to prescribe pregnancy tests to report their use and to include a link to their website on their personnel website.
This PHG is just one of several that HHS is proposing.”