Zero Cost Preventive Health Services For Women Added To The Affordable Care Act

Amid World Breastfeeding Week going on last week, I missed some other awesome news. In what some are calling a...
Amid World Breastfeeding Week going on last week, I missed some other awesome news. In what some are calling a historic health care move, the Obama administration, under advice from an advisory team, has overhauled the nation's healthcare system with a new clause that U.S. health insurance companies must offer women free birth control and other preventive health care services. The new guidelines, part of the Affordable Care Act from the Health and Human Services Department mean that women will receive preventive health services at no additional cost, plus health insurance plans must now cover women’s preventive services, including well-woman visits, breastfeeding support, domestic violence screening, and contraception without charging a co-payment, co-insurance or a deductible. The guidelines cover a ton of health care services that really make a difference. Women will now have access to a full range of recommended preventive services without excessive costs. Below is a line-up of services covered.
  • well-woman visits;
  • screening for gestational diabetes;
  • human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA testing for women 30 years and older;
  • sexually-transmitted infection counseling;
  • human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) screening and counseling;
  • FDA-approved contraception methods and contraceptive counseling;
  • breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling; and
  • domestic violence screening and counseling.
There's a bit of a wait though. New health plans will need to include these services without cost sharing beginning on or after August 1, 2012 - but still, it's great news for most working families. To learn more about the HHS guidelines for expanding women’s preventive services, visit Affordable Care Act Rules on Expanding Access to Preventive Services for Women or see the full guidelines at HRSA.

Tags: health care health care reform preventative services safe sex women’s health


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