Happy free birth control day!
A lot of the recent discussion of contraception coverage has focused on the fact that sometimes women take birth control pills for purely medical reasons [PDF]. Which is true, and it’s tragic when they can’t afford their meds, but this also kind of misses the fact that sometimes women take birth control pills so that they can have sex and not have babies. And let’s be honest, both those things are great.
Luckily, as of today private insurance companies need to offer free contraception, including the Pill. Obamacare, women with medical issues salute you! Women who don’t want kids salute you! Women who want kids, but only a certain number or not right now salute you! Future generations salute you, because a lower birth rate will improve carbon levels and also mean they have shorter lines at Starbucks! And we all salute you for probably making Rush Limbaugh’s head explode.
Here’s the list of stuff you no longer have a copay on, starting today:
- All FDA-approved contraceptives (which includes birth control pills, IUDs, Plan B, and sterilization procedures but not abortifacients like RU-486).
- Contraceptive counseling.
- “Well-woman” visits, which sound like crystal healing with your doula but just means your annual GYN exam.
- Testing and counseling for sexually transmitted infections, including HPV tests (over and above your Pap smear).
- Screening and counseling for domestic violence.
- And, for those of you who do want to engage in safe, sane, and consensual reproduction: gestational diabetes screening and breastfeeding supplies.
So ladies, go out and get yourself some birth control! I’m going to request that mine come straight out of Rick Santorum’s taxes. I’d ask for Mitt Romney’s, but, well, you know.
Free Birth Control, Reproductive Services for Women Starting August 1, Scientific American.