#FlattentheBoom: Family planning during COVID-19

April 28th, 2020 | News


It started at a Zoom happy hour when three JSI colleagues, Jennifer Kawatu, Michelle Samplin-Salgado, and Katie Quimby were talking about the potential baby boom following shelter-at-home orders. Condom shelves were bare, clinics were closed to all but emergency services, and many states were restricting abortion services.

Reproductive health may not seem like an essential service during a pandemic, but an unwanted pregnancy or a sexually transmitted infection can be a life-altering event—and one that is entirely preventable,” notes Jennifer.

How could they let people who wanted to stay safe at home and remain on their birth control know about resources such as telemedicine visits and mail-order supplies? How could they convey information in a fun and attention-getting way? Memes, social media graphics? And just like that, Flatten the Boom was, well, conceived.

What started as a play on the Flatten the Curve chart continues to evolve, as the three develop and post images that play off of current trends and topics like toilet paper shortages and the Tiger King to let people know that free birth control is available.John Snow Flatten the Bomb graphic

Each Flatten the Boom image shared on Twitter and Instagram includes a link to a clinic finder to help people find local sexual and reproductive health service providers. Many health care providers are using telehealth, and curbside pickup and mail delivery of supplies to meet patient needs, and Flatten the Boom is helping to make that information accessible.

Join #FlattentheBoom to help spread the word. No one should get pregnant (unless she wants to) or contract an STD because s/he didn’t know how or where to access services.

Learn more about the work Jennifer, Michelle, and Katie (to name just a few) do in Family Planning and Reproductive Health.

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