Posted by Becky Martin, NPA Advocacy Director February 3, 2012 at 12:01 AM
The National Physicians Alliance is committed to eliminating health disparities and to broadening—not narrowing—access to the full range of essential health care services. This week, two powerful groups have acted to narrow women’s access to care:
1) The US Conference of Catholic Bishops is protesting the Department of Health and Human Services rule that requires employers who provide insurance to their employees to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives, as recommended by the Institute of Medicine. The rule does not require plans to cover abortions. Churches and church-affiliated secondary schools are exempt from the rule, but religiously affiliated hospitals, charities, and universities are not exempt.
2) The Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation decided to defund Planned Parenthood (and then reversed that decision in the wake of a national backlash).
Moves like these will limit women’s equitable access to health care, and will disproportionately hurt low income women.
Please CLICK HERE to add your name to the following petition, which we will deliver to Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius.
As health care providers committed to comprehensive health care for women and to the elimination of health disparities, we stand in strong support of the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that all employers who provide insurance to their employees cover all FDA-approved contraceptives, as recommended by the Institute of Medicine.
We invite your comments below.
To learn more about this ruling and religious liberty read this excellent brief on this topic from the ACLU - “Group Health Plans and Health Insurance Issuers Relating to Coverage of Preventive Services Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act”
To learn more about current state laws requiring insurance coverage for contraception read this informative brief from the National Conference of State Legislatures.
“At least 26 states have laws requiring insurers that cover prescription drugs also provide coverage for any Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved contraceptive. These states include: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.” more>>