You might be a little nervous about your first family-planning visit – especially if it’s your first time setting up your own medical appointment. Our receptionists, nurses and doctors are friendly, welcoming and here to help you. If you are a teenager or young adult, you can schedule your visit, fill out forms and attend the visit on your own. You can also bring a friend, partner or anyone you choose to your appointment with you. All of your health information is kept private and confidential.
During an appointment at an Axis Health System clinic, you can talk to a primary care provider about birth control and emergency contraceptives, take a pregnancy test, discuss pregnancy options, get screened for certain cancers, get tested and treated for Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) , and learn about preconception health services. Here are some Frequently Asked Questions about family planning visits:
What do I need to say when I call the clinic?
When you call our clinic, tell the person who answers the phone: “I want to make a confidential appointment for family planning services.” Depending on your circumstances, you may also add: “I don’t have money to pay” and “I don’t want anyone to know.” If you live in La Plata County, call 970.335.2288 to make an appointment. If you live in Archuleta County, call 970.264.2104.
What will the clinic staff ask me when I call?
During your call, you will be asked some basic information about yourself. This includes: your name, date of birth, a safe phone number to contact you, a mailing address, and if you have insurance. You may also be asked some other demographic questions. If you do not feel safe disclosing your home address, you can provide the address of a supportive friend or family member. If you decide to use a parent or legal guardian’s mailing address, you can tell the clinic staff to not send any mail to the residence.
How much will it cost, and what do I need to bring?
For most teenagers and many people with a low income, getting care through our Sexual Health & Family Planning Program is free. You may be asked to bring proof of income to your appointment, which is how a clinic decides if you qualify for free services or care at a reduced cost. However, you cannot be refused services at our clinic if you are unable to pay or show proof of income. You will also be asked to bring a valid form of identification (ID). This can be a driver’s license or school ID. However, if you do not have an ID that is OK, too! You cannot be refused services at our clinic if you cannot provide identification.
What if I am undocumented?
Anyone can go to our clinic regardless of their immigration status. U.S. citizenship is not required. Additionally, seeking care at our clinic is not considered a public benefit. This means that going to our clinic will not affect your ability to apply for U.S. permanent residency in the future. We offer translation services in our clinics. Serving special populations is an important responsibility for our federally-designated Community Health Clinics. Our compassionate staff welcomes patients of all genders, ethnicities, races and socioeconomic levels.
Do I need to fill out forms before my appointment?
We recommend that you fill out our enrollment form before an appointment. It will save you time during your visit. You may fill it out yourself and sign the consent on your own. It includes a registration form, consent form and financial information form. It’s fast to type into the fillable form online and print it out. Or, you can print it out and fill it in by hand. To save time, bring the finished form to your first appointment. If you don’t have a printer, you can fill out the forms in the clinic office before your visit. It takes about 10 minutes to read and fill them out by hand.
Does the first visit include a physical exam or pelvic exam?
In general, the first visit can be a simple conversation with your primary care provider to talk about your needs. If you do need an exam, for example to test for an STI or take a pregnancy test, the provider will describe the details and make sure you feel comfortable.
What if I don’t know what type of birth control I want?
That is OK. You will be able to talk about the different methods with a provider at your appointment. When deciding on what type of birth control to get, it’s important to think about how easy it is for you to be able to get to the clinic for refills or follow-up visits. It can be helpful to begin researching your options. These options include:
The Axis Health System Sexual Health & Family Planning Program was developed (in part) with federal funds from the Office of Population Affairs grant FPHA080079.