Sandra Fluke writes that the portion of Affordable Care Act that guarantees women access to preventative health services went into effect today.
Women across the country have reason to celebrate tonight. Why? Because on Wednesday, the law that provides American women with access to preventive health services, including birth control, at no cost-no co-pay, no increase in premium, no deductible-goes into effect.
Under the law, women are guaranteed “a free annual well-woman visit” (including screenings for domestic violence and HIV), DNA screenings for HPV every three years, free screenings for gestational diabetes for pregnant women, and no-cost contraception. Sometimes it almost feels like we’re not living in the Stone Age here in the US. Almost:
But they do need to find out when their next insurance plan year begins, and make sure their plan qualifies. That’s because — with the exception of women who access their insurance through certain religiously-affiliated non-profits and schools, who unfortunately must wait another year for contraception coverage — this policy takes effect August 1. But each woman’s insurance plan will implement these benefits with the next new plan year after today. So if a woman’s insurance plan year begins on September 15, she’s eligible for these services beginning September 15.