Tuesday, July 31, 2012

2 Million Women in PA Get Better Health Care

Tomorrow, August 1st, eight provisions in the Affordable Care Act kick in, making health care for women at little easier.

From the Dept of Health & Human Services:

Forty-seven million women are getting greater control over their health care and access to eight new prevention-related health care services without paying more out of their own pocket beginning Aug. 1, 2012, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced today.
Previously some insurance companies did not cover these preventive services for women at all under their health plans, while some women had to pay deductibles or copays for the care they needed to stay healthy. The new rules in the health care law requiring coverage of these services take effect at the next renewal date – on or after Aug. 1, 2012—for most health insurance plans. For the first time ever, women will have access to even more life-saving preventive care free of charge.

The eight provisions are:

·         Well-woman visits.
·         Gestational diabetes screening that helps protect pregnant women from one of the most serious pregnancy-related diseases.
·         Domestic and interpersonal violence screening and counseling.
·         FDA-approved contraceptive methods, and contraceptive education and counseling.
·         Breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling.
·         HPV DNA testing, for women 30 or older.
·         Sexually transmitted infections counseling for sexually-active women.
·         HIV screening and counseling for sexually-active women.

HHS provides state by state data, which shows over 2 million women in Pennsylvania being eligible for the new benefits.  Looking at the list of states, it looks like Pennsylvania ranks 5th behind, California, New York, Texas, and Florida.  

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