If You Live In The Midwest, You Might Just Get A Free Vasectomy
Following the Supreme Court’s decision that overturned Roe v. Wade, demand for vasectomies surged, and a number of clinics in the Midwest have stepped up to the plate.
After the U.S. Supreme Court this summer overturned Roe v. Wade, the legislation that made access to abortion a federal right, people with uteruses and their families across the country have had to figure out how to safeguard their reproductive choices — and rights — in a rapidly shifting legal landscape. But abortion is just one (albeit extremely important) family planning tool, and with the procedure off the table in many states, many men stepped up to the plate and chose to get a vasectomy to protect their partners from unwanted pregnancy.
Reports show that following the court’s decision, demand for vasectomies surged. And now, if you live in the Midwest, you may qualify for a free vasectomy, which is great if you’re already thinking about getting one — or if you want one and aren’t sure you can afford the procedure.
According to The Guardian, Planned Parenthood has teamed up with a mobile vasectomy clinic — nicknamed the “Nutcracker” and run by Dr. Esgar Guarin — to offer free vasectomies. In November, 60 free vasectomies will be offered over the course of three days in St. Louis, Springfield, and Joplin, Missouri.
The following week, the clinic will move to Iowa and visit several towns, offering an additional 40 free vasectomies. The vasectomies will be offered free of charge to individuals without health insurance.
“It’s a very particular moment in reproductive rights in the United States. And we need to talk about it,” Dr. Guarin said. The doctor also explained that vasectomies are performed less often than tubal ligation, despite being cheaper, less invasive, more commonly reversible, and a procedure that garners a much shorter recovery period.
According to Planned Parenthood, the average cost of a vasectomy is between $0 and $1,000, including follow-up visits. “The cost of a vasectomy varies and depends on where you get it, what kind you get, and whether or not you have health insurance that will cover some or all of the cost,” the nonprofit explains.
“Even if your vasectomy costs more than other methods up front, it usually ends up saving you money in the long run because it lasts forever,” the information continues. “Vasectomies are about 6 times cheaper than female sterilization [called tubal ligation].”
The efforts are part of World Vasectomy Day on Nov. 18, including a host of November activities, plus a year-round focus on increasing awareness. Last year, Dr. Guarin offered the vasectomies through Planned Parenthood in St. Louis, and the demand prompted the collaboration to expand to other cities.
“The decision was made to expand it to other cities even before the toppling of Roe v Wade, the 1973 supreme court ruling which previously guaranteed abortion rights, sent demand soaring,” NBC News explains.
According to AP News, Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis region and southwest Missouri noted that 42 vasectomies were performed in July 2022 compared to only 10 during the same month last year. Tubal ligation procedures jumped to 18 in July of 2022 from only three in July 2021.