FierceHealthcare FierceHealthIT FierceMobileHealthcare FierceHealthPayer
FierceHealthFinance FierceEMR FiercePracticeManagemtn Hospital Impact

Free Newsletter

About | View Sample | Privacy

IOM: Insurers should provide free contraceptives

It appears likely that all health insurance companies will be required to provide free contraceptives to women next year after an advisory health panel made a formal recommendation to the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS).

HHS commissioned the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to identify gaps in the department's list of preventive health services already covered for women, reports the Wall Street Journal. The health reform law states that preventive healthcare services must be available free of charge, but didn’t identify specific types of preventive care.  

Obama administration officials said they were inclined to accept the IOM's advice, the New York Times reports. HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said her agency is "reviewing the report closely" and plans to release its own recommendations "very soon," notes the Washington Post. Her decision will not require further action by Congress.

The IOM specifically recommended that insurers cover "the full range" of contraceptive methods approved by the Food and Drug Administration and sterilization, notes the WSJ.

In addition to contraceptives, the IOM said health plans should cover screenings to detect domestic violence, HIV, and gestational diabetes in pregnant women. Insurers also should provide counseling and equipment to promote breastfeeding, testing for the human papillomavirus as part of cervical cancer screening, and annual preventive-care visits to help ensure women are healthy when they become pregnant, the Times notes.

To learn more:
- here's the IOM report
- read the New York Times article
- check out the Wall Street Journal story
- read the Washington Post piece

Related Articles:
If birth control is preventive medicine, insurers must cover all costs
Regence owes $148K for wrongly denying women birth control
Unintended pregnancies cost $11B a year in government-underwritten medical care
Ella approval moves emergency-contraception dilemmas back to doctors

Email Twitter Facebook LinkedIn StumbleUpon
Get Your FREE FierceHealthPayer Email Newsletter: