PRCH supports the recent recommendation of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to include contraception in the preventive health benefits for women under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). As physicians, we know that access to contraception is essential to the health and well-being of our patients.
Anti-choice arguments have grown meaner in the past couple of years. The feigned concern for women is slipping away and being replaced by a searing hatred for the very notion that women living in poverty have rights.
Nearly four in ten Latinos are uninsured. “Si se puede…” can mean “IF she can…” and this conditional statement hints at the obstacles that remain after the HHS decision. IF a Latina can get health insurance, IF she can make it to a provider’s office who can provide culturally-competent care in her language, and IF she can obtain and fill her prescription, THEN she will be able to fully enjoy the benefits of no-copay birth control.
The Department of Health and Human Services has adopted guidelines for insurance coverage on women’s preventive health services that include all the recommendations recently made by the Institute of Medicine and require new health insurance plans to cover women’s preventive services such as well-woman visits, breastfeeding support, domestic violence screening, and contraception without charging a co-payment, co-insurance or a deductible.
What’s at stake in the HHS decision around the IOM recommendations on contraception? First, the health and rights of women who will benefit from easier access to contraception. And second, the IOM’s action draws attention to the extent to which contraception has become yet another front in the nation’s unending culture war.
When my mom knew my birth control was not only preventing “changes in my mood” but also the chance that I could get pregnant, she stopped paying for my birth control; she said, “I am not supporting your habit.”
Over the past 10 days, the White House has postponed two scheduled conference calls on the IOM recommendations regarding preventive care for women. The deadline originally set by HHS for releasing its final recommendations is the same as the deadline for an agreement on the debt ceiling. Are the two connected?
The anti-choice, anti-contraceptive, anti-women arguments against insurance coverage for birth control now includes this gem from Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly.
If you had any lingering hope that the Institute of Medicine could recommend including contraception in the list of preventive services that should be offered without co-pay and not have a hysterical reaction from anti-choicers, I’m afraid I’ll have to dash those hopes.
Virtually every one of the IOM recommendations will greatly benefit Latina women. whether they are seeking to plan and space pregnancies, have healthy pregnancies, keep their infants healthy, or get basic preventive healthcare.