WOMEN'S WAY leads the Southeastern Pennsylvania chapter of Raising Women's Voices, a coalition formed to ensure that women's voices were heard and reproductive health concerns were address during the federal health care reform debate. This diverse coalition is now advocating for health care reform implementation policies at the state and federal level that support and protect the full-range of comprehensive reproductive health care services for women. We want to ensure that the promise of health care reform becomes a reality for ALL women!
The Impact of Health Care Reform for Women
The passage of health care reform in this country brought with it many significant gains for women. For example: a woman with a pre-existing condition such as breast cancer or a pregnancy will no longer be denied insurance coverage and the practice of gender rating will be prohibited so a woman can no longer be charged more for insurance than a man. Learn more about the positive impact of this law!
A series of new benefits targeting women under the health care reform law kicked in on August 1, 2012, including one requiring health insurance plans to cover birth control. As of August 1st, a number of preventative care services must be covered by health insurance companies without charging a deductible. These include “well woman” doctor’s visits, diabetes screening for pregnant women, domestic violence counseling, breastfeeding support, DNA testing for the HPV virus for women 30 years of age or older, counseling on sexually transmitted diseases, HIV screening and birth control, along with contraceptives education and counseling. Many Americans, however, are unaware of this new co-pay free access to these preventative health care services and others have questions regarding implementation and coverage.
On February 20, 2013, the Department of Health and Human Services released a set of Frequently Asked Questions which clarified many issues related to implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s preventive services requirement. The FAQ is an important step towards ensuring that insurance plans and issuers implement the Women’s Preventive Health Services provision so that women get the comprehensive and affordable services guaranteed by the Affordable Care Act. While the FAQ leaves some implementation questions unanswered, we are pleased that the Department addressed several major issues to make sure that women have the coverage required by the law. To see the Fact Sheet put together by the National Women's Law Center, click here.
Open enrollment in the Health Insurance Marketplace begins on October 1, 2013 for coverage beginning as early as January 1, 2014. WOMEN'S WAY encourages all women, girls, and their families to explore their health care options:
We know there is a lot of misinformation out there and WOMEN'S WAY is committed to ensuring that all women in Pennsylvania are educated about the preventative health services they are now guaranteed to receive without a co-pay. If you have questions about how Health Care Reform affects you or your family, please do not hesitate to contact Director of Public Policy, Jen Horwitz.
Join Raising Women's Voices of SEPA!
If your organization is interested in joining Raising Women's Voices of Southeastern Pennsylvania, please contact Jennifer Horwitz, WOMEN'S WAY's Director of Public Policy and Coalition Chair of Raising Women's Voices of SEPA.