Illinois To Consider Contraceptive Coverage Parity Bill
Illinois state Rep. Mary Flowers (D) has introduced new legislation that would force insurance companies that cover prescriptions for Viagra to also cover prescriptions for oral contraceptives.
Many insurance companies cover at least a portion of Viagra's cost, yet deny coverage of contraceptives that would actually lower medical costs through a reduction in costly unplanned pregnancies. Flowers charges that Viagra is "not medically necessary" while "the prevention of pregnancy can have health benefits for women," and has accused insurance companies of unjust discrimination against women.
A spokesperson for the Illinois Association of HMOs denies that such policies are discriminatory, arguing that Viagra "treats a medical condition" and that "contraception is more of a therapeutic prescription." The Catholic Conference of Illinois has joined the HMO association in opposition to the bill, arguing that "artificial birth control is inappropriate and mandating insurance coverage is something we would be opposed to."
Illinois' Governor, House Speaker, and Senate President have not yet indicated their position on Flowers' legislation.
Media Resources: Chicago Tribune - February 22, 1999
7/30/2014 Fifth Circuit Court Rules In Favor Of Mississippi's Last Clinic - Mississippi's last remaining abortion clinic will remain open after a the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit upheld a preliminary injunction against HB 1390, the Mississippi TRAP (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers) law requiring abortion providers to obtain admitting privileges at area hospitals.
Had the court not upheld the lower federal's court's injunction, HB 1390 would have shuttered Jackson Women's Health Organization (JWHO), the state's only comprehensive reproductive health center. . . .