PPWNM Statement on Affordable Care Act Supreme Court Ruling
GRAND RAPIDS, MI — This morning, Thursday, June 28, 2012, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled the Affordable Care Act (ACA) constitutional. This is a major victory for the American people and the greatest advancement for women and women’s health in a generation.
The decision will have a profound and concrete impact on millions of people’s lives. Affordable, quality care will now be available to millions of women who had no coverage or inadequate coverage before. Today, we are closer than ever to realizing the promise of health care to all. Already, millions have benefitted from this breakthrough reform to our health care system, and millions more stand to benefit in the coming years thanks to the hard work of our nation’s leaders, and the thoughtful decision of our highest court.
At Planned Parenthood, we know how important this law and this decision are for women and families, because we see the need for affordable health care every day. One in five women in America relies on Planned Parenthood services at some point in their lives. At PPWNM, 100 percent of those services are preventive and potentially life-saving including cancer screenings, birth control, prevention and treatment for STDs, wellness exams, and much, much more. For most of the people we serve, we are their only source of health care. The women who come to Planned Parenthood are struggling to balance paying for birth control and essential health care with putting food on the table for their families and a roof over their head. With the Affordable Care Act, these decisions will be easier.
The many benefits to women and women’s health in the ACA include access to preventive health care with no co-pays, direct access to Ob/Gyn providers with no referrals, and the end of discriminatory practices against women such as charging women higher premiums and denying coverage for pre-existing conditions. Millions of women are now assured access to birth control without any out of pocket expense starting in August 2012, protecting their health, saving them money, and giving them control over whether and when to have children. For women, birth control isn’t a political or social issue. It is basic health care and an economic concern. Women spend up to $600 a year on birth control. These resources will now be available to help pay for groceries, gas for the car and the rent.
As a leading women’s health care provider and advocate in our region, Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan stands firmly alongside women, families, and patients across this country whose access to affordable, quality health care is transformed by the Affordable Care Act; and we stand ready to provide the quality, affordable sexual health care that the people of West Michigan have come to rely on, no matter what.
Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan, Inc.
Major Benefits of the Affordable Care Act:
• More than 45 million women have already received coverage for preventive health screenings at no cost since August 2010 thanks to the Affordable Care Act – including mammograms and Pap tests – and millions more will be able to get free screenings in the coming years.
• 3.1 million young adults have already been able to stay on their parents’ insurance because of the Affordable Care Act. In the next year, millions more who would have otherwise lost coverage will continue to be insured under their parents’ plan.
• Women are guaranteed direct access to OB/GYN providers without a referral, as a result of the Affordable Care Act.
• Starting in August, birth control will be treated like any other preventive prescription under the Affordable Care Act, and will be available without co-pays or deductibles.
• As a result of the Affordable Care Act, 17 million women will be newly insured. (Health care providers that focus on family planning increasingly contract with private insurance companies. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 33 percent of all family planning providers now contract with private insurers – and 49 percent of Planned Parenthood health centers have contracts with private insurance companies. PPWNM accepts most major health insurances.)
Nearly 800 Planned Parenthood health centers serve nearly three million patients every year, and one in five women in America relies on Planned Parenthood at some point in her life.
Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan serves nearly 15,000 clients per year at eight health centers throughout our 52-county region. We offer 100 percent preventive and potentially life-saving services which include cancer screenings, birth control, prevention and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, wellness exams, and sexual health education and information.
Planned Parenthood of West and Northern Michigan provides sexual health care and sexuality education services, with locations in eight Michigan cities. Learn more at www.ppwnm.org.