On Monday, three separate federal agencies sent out reminders to health insurers that they should be covering birth control with no “cost sharing” stipulations on their customers.
The Department of Labor, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Treasury Department issued a pointed set of clarifications reminding insurers that under the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, they should be offering customers at least one form of contraception in each method, free of cost.
Since the passing of the Affordable Care Act, women have complained that their insurance companies have given them the runaround when it came to access to affordable birth control, often citing copays or forcing them to find other methods that are covered under insurance.
Currently, many insurers refuse to cover name brand birth control methods if there is a generic on the market. However if there is no generic available, women have had to pay. Dr. Jennifer Walden suggested that one should tell their doctor what method of birth control they prefer and the doctor will know which ones have generics and which ones do not, but it is important you let your doctor know that money is an issue.
The cost of can be a huge monthly expense. Women living below or just at the poverty line (which is often above minimum wage) often find themselves priced out from gaining access to birth control. And different types of birth control can have different effects for different women, hence the need for options.
Currently, there are 18 methods of contraception under the FDA’s Birth Control guide, and insurers have to provide at least one in each without additional cost. To learn more about them, click here.