Archive for February 10th, 2012
The Obama administration today unveiled revised rules for offering no-cost contraception coverage. Not everyone agrees about the provision’s cost, though.
One major issue dominated the health policy news cycle this week: the new federal contraception rules under the federal health reform law. Just today, the Obama administration announced revisions to the rules.
Under the revision, religiously affiliated employers will not have to provide contraceptive coverage for their employees, but their health insurance companies will be required to directly reach out to women and offer them the coverage at no charge.
The rules implement a provision in the federal health reform law that requires health plans to cover preventive services without copayments or deductibles. The policy previously exempted certain religious employers, such as houses of worship, from providing contraceptive coverage, but not Catholic hospitals, schools or other religiously affiliated organizations. HHS announced on Jan. 20 that it would not expand the exemption but would give religiously affiliated employers an extra year to comply, meaning they will have until Aug. 1, 2013, to begin providing the coverage.
According to a White House fact sheet delineating the revision, “Contraception coverage will be offered to women by their employers’ insurance companies directly, with no role for religious employers who oppose contraception.” Religious employers will not have to subsidize the coverage.
While a huge story, the contraception issue wasn’t the only health policy news this week. Below is the other important news of the week.
- “U.S. Military Meals Redux: More Fruit and Vegetables, Less Fat,” Los Angeles Times‘ “Booster Shots”: The latest battle of the bulge.
- “New Mental Health Manual Is ‘Dangerous’ Say Experts,” Reuters: The fine line between normal personalities and personality disorders. Read the rest of this entry »
Religiously affiliated employers will not have to provide contraceptive coverage for their employees, but their health insurance companies will be required to directly reach out to women and offer them the coverage at no charge, the White House announced today in a revision to federal rules, AP/Long Island Newsday reports (Feller, AP/Long Island Newsday, 2/10). Read the rest of this entry »