WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) announced that starting today, thanks to the Affordable Care Act, all new health care plans will be required at the start of their plan year to provide free coverage of key women's preventive services.
"Today is an important day for women across America," said Congressman Cohen. "Up until now, many health insurance policies didn't even cover basic women's preventive care. Others charged such high co-payments for key preventive services that women went without them altogether. Studies have shown that more than half of women have delayed or avoided preventive care because of its cost. Now, because of the Affordable Care Act that I was proud to support, women with new plans will have coverage for key women's preventive services with no co-pays."
Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, new health plans have already been required to provide free coverage of a package of certain key preventive services, including such services as colonoscopies, mammograms, cholesterol screenings, and flu shots. Beginning today, all new insurance plans will be required to cover additional services and screenings for women with no out-of-pocket charges. These include services that are essential to helping women stay healthy, including, domestic violence screening, FDA-approved contraception, breastfeeding support and supplies, gestational diabetes screening, HPV testing, sexually transmitted infection counseling, HIV screening, and well-woman visits.
Soon, there will also be additional improvements for women under the Affordable Care Act. In the past, insurers could deny women coverage because of anything from being a breast cancer survivor to being pregnant. Insurers could also charge women up to 50 percent more than men for the same coverage. But under the health care law, beginning in 2014, it will be illegal to deny coverage to someone due to a pre-existing condition. And it will also be illegal to charge women more than men just because they're women.
Read this original document at: http://cohen.house.gov/press-release/cohen-starting-today-new-health-insurance-policies-will-provide-free-coverage-key