Free Birth Control Rule Kicks In Today

Health plans must now cover women's preventative care

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 1, 2012 7:06 AM CDT | Updated Aug 1, 2012 7:57 AM CDT

(Newser) – Good news, ladies: Starting today, most insurance plans must cover a range of women's preventative health services, including domestic violence screenings, "well woman visits," and, most controversially, no-cost birth control. Don't run to your gynecologist right away though—the rules will apply to all new plans, but only kick in for existing plans when they're renewed, NPR reports. Kathleen Sebelius praised the new rules yesterday on Capitol Hill, saying that before ObamaCare passed, many plans didn't cover basic women's health services.

"Surveys showed that more than half the women in this country delayed or avoided preventative care because of its cost," Sebelius said. But the birth control rule hasn't gone over well with some religious conservatives. The administration has already given church-affiliated employers a one-year exemption, but now some private business owners are suing, saying they shouldn't have to pay for health benefits they disagree with, either. A federal judge has already given one employer permission to dodge the new rules.

Birth control is about to be a lot easier to get.
Birth control is about to be a lot easier to get.   (Shutterstock)
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