Okay, whether you like Justin Bieber or not, you’re going to want to hear this.

Does “No More Co-pays or Deductibles for Contraception” sound like music to your ears? Well, maybe not all of you, but a LOT of you, I’m sure. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will begin providing women with certain preventive care such as contraception, without paying any more out of their own pockets. Many insurers have indicated Tier 1 contraceptives are now covered at no cost, effective today. If you have a group health plan (employer sponsored), many of the other benefits, like Breastfeeding Support, HIV Screening and Counseling, among much more – will be covered at no cost when your group health plan renews. If you have an individual policy (non-employer sponsored), and you are with BlueCrossBlueShield of Texas, these benefits begin for you TODAY!

So there you have it, your quick contraception update. If you want to learn more, keep reading. Our office also has a more in-depth document that covers all of the ACA Preventive Care Services, and it is available upon your request.

It is our pleasure to keep you informed.

What the Affordable Care Act means for Women:

Direct access to ob-gyn care: The ACA allows women to make an appointment with an ob-gyn without getting a referral first

Coverage for more people: “Starting in 2014, if you are a 27-year-old unemployed single woman with no kids, you will have more opportunities to qualify for coverage,” says Alvarez. “That’s going to be a lifeline for millions of people, particularly single, childless adults.” Before the ACA, you had to be pregnant, disabled, or meet poverty guidelines to qualify.

Less denial of coverage: Prohibits new insurance plans from denying women coverage on the basis of pregnancy, a previous cesarean delivery, a history of domestic violence or other pre-existing medical conditions

No co-payments or deductibles: Preventive and other services will be covered without “cost-sharing” (i.e., no co-payments, deductibles, or co-insurance) by August 1, 2012. Those services include:

  • Well-woman visits
  • Contraception (all FDA-approved methods, though not drugs used post-intercourse such as Plan B or RU-486).
  • Gestational diabetes screening
  • HPV DNA testing every three years for women 30 years and older, regardless of PAP smear results
  • Sexually transmitted infection (STI) counseling
  • HIV screening/counseling
  • Breastfeeding support, supplies such as pumps, and counseling
  • Domestic/interpersonal violence screening and services

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