Taken from the March/April 2013 issue of the Women's Health Activist Newsletter.
Because most plans’ coverage periods start at the beginning of the calendar year, many women gained access to these important services without co-pays in January. Thanks to the new health care law, women are guaranteed coverage without co-pays for annual well-women visits, contraception, contraceptive counseling, breastfeeding counseling and equipment, and HIV counseling and testing. In addition, co-pays can no longer be charged to screen women for a variety of critical health issues, including: gestational diabetes, breast and cervical cancer, intimate partner violence, and sexually transmitted infections.
Preventive care plays an essential role in maintaining and improving the health of women and their families. Requiring that insurance plans cover certain women’s health preventive services without additional charges (like co-pays) will reduce the financial barriers that used to prevent women from accessing critical health services. For example, providing contraception without a co-pay will improve women’s access to family planning services and improve their ability to prevent and/or space out pregnancies — which improves the health of both women and their babies. This increased coverage will help more women stay healthy!
Find out if your health insurance is providing you with this coverage yet by calling the customer service number on insurance card, and asking if you get women’s preventive services without co-pays or deductibles. For more information on how to investigate your insurance coverage, visit http://tinyurl.com/bb4rggu.
We hope you’ll find out that your plan already covers these important women’s preventive health services without charging extra — and you’ve gained a concrete improvement in your health insurance. If your plan is not yet covering women’s preventive health care services without charging additional costs, please let us know — we can help you get this coverage! You can reach us at info@RaisingWomensVoices.net.
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