Planned Parenthood is attempting to get hormonal birth control classified as a preventive medicine under the new healthcare bill. If this were to happen, insurance policies would be required to pay the entire cost, as customers under new plans must have all preventive care covered (this law does not apply to existing plans). Although birth control is not considered preventive by groups such as the Centers for Disease Contril, the new healthcare bill gives Health and …
… Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius wide latitude to determine what should be considered as such in new insurance plans. As such, Sebelius has ordered a study to be completed by the Institute of Medicine that will determine what should be included as preventive care.
Predictably, conservative groups such as the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Heritage Foundation have come out against the bill. However, poll numbers even among members of their own faiths suggest that support for this new proposal is strong. 81 percent of women and 60 percent of men agree that birth control should “definitely” or “probably” be considered preventive. This support is also nearly as high among Catholic women with 77% believing it should be covered under the new law. Indeed, the poll also shows that there is much evidence for making birth control preventive: 48 percent of women making under $40,000 per year say that cost often prevents from using birth control consistently. For women between the prime baby-making ages of 18 and 34, this jumps to 55 percent. Thus, it is quite clear that by diverting a small amount of money towards universal birth control, the potential monetary and emotional toll of pregnancy-related care can be vastly decreased.
And I think that should make everyone on all sides of the fence happy. Well. Almost everyone.