Published: | Updated: 08.01.12
Seattle -- Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest celebrates a critical early milestone for women’s preventive health under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Specifically, the birth control benefit that begins going into effect today will start making birth control available at no cost to women, providing essential preventive care and easing the strain on household budgets.
Women will see this benefit at varying times depending on their plans. Specifically, the birth control benefit will start tomorrow for those on new private insurance plans and will continue to take effect for other plans over the coming months.
“As the region’s leading women’s health care provider and advocate, Planned Parenthood knows firsthand how critical the birth control benefit is for women and families, not just for their health but also for their pocketbooks,” said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest. “We see the need for affordable health care every single day. And for the one in five women who relies on Planned Parenthood at some point in her life, the preventive benefits that begin rolling out today will help ease the struggle of deciding whether to pay for birth control or pay for textbooks, groceries, or gas for the car.”
As implementation of the Affordable Care Act continues, Planned Parenthood will stand alongside the nearly three million patients served by Planned Parenthood health centers across the nation every year, continuing the fight for access to affordable, quality health care.
“Politics should never interfere with access to health care. Americans aren’t interested in reopening fights over health care reform,” said Richards. “Let’s be very clear: expanding Medicaid is smart fiscal and health policy for states. There is no good reason for states not to expand coverage for those who need it most and Planned Parenthood will be working across the country to ensure that, regardless of income, Americans will gain that access.”
Nearly half of Planned Parenthood patients rely on Medicaid coverage to access preventive care, including cancer screenings and birth control.
The Affordable Care Act is the greatest advance for women’s health in a generation. As the benefits for women’s preventive care continue to roll out, millions of women will gain access to basic preventive care at no cost, including birth control, cancer screenings, well-woman exams, and screenings for diabetes and high blood pressure. Additionally, under the ACA, women will no longer have to pay more for health insurance than men and people can no longer be denied insurance coverage for pre-existing conditions like breast cancer, having a C-section, or being the victim of domestic violence.
Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest is the region’s leading sexual and reproductive health care provider and advocate. We believe everyone has the right to choose when or whether to have a child, and that every child should be wanted and loved. Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest operates 28 health centers in Alaska, Idaho, and western Washington, providing medical services and sexuality education for thousands of women, men, and teenagers each year. Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest is a 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization. We rely heavily on support from donors to help sustain responsible reproduction