Many women are already singing the praises of the changes in the coverage regulations for women under the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act.
Since the Act went into effect, the following additional coverages for preventive services have been added for women, without deductible, co-insurance, or co-payments:
• All forms of patient, sterilization procedures, and contraceptive methods that have Food and Drug Administration approval.
• An annual “well-woman” preventive care visit for women.
• HPV virus screening every three years for women over the age of 30.
• A gestational diabetes screening for women who are at a high risk of the condition, and those who are between 24 and 28 weeks pregnant.
• HIV screening every year, and counseling for sexually transmitted infections such as HIV.
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• Support, counseling, and supplies for breastfeeding.
• Screening and counseling for domestic violence.
When women had been required to pay for these products, screenings, tests, and services out of their own pockets, it was taking up a significant amount of their monthly budgets. For example, the average cost of birth control pills is $25 per month ($300 annually). The birth control patch adds another $5 every month to that bill. IUDs and other methods that last longer can lead to an upfront expense of hundreds of dollars.
Now, as a result of the new health regulations in the United States, the majority of health insurance policies will be required to cover all of the above listed contraceptive methods and preventive care services without deductibles, co-insurance, or co-pays.
It is hoped that this will help to prevent many health problems among women, and will assist in reducing the number of unplanned pregnancies in the country – which currently accounts for almost half of all pregnancies – thereby decreasing the number of abortions, as well.
Another type of plan women are looking into is supplement cancer insurance, which pays the consumer for wellness tests. So now, health insurance won’t charge for certain preventative exams plus women are getting money back from these types of plans as well. Preventative screening benefits have been increased on many insurance plans as of late. It is suggested to talk to your agent about what your state offers in wellness tests.