House Dems call on HHS for 12-month supplies of birth control

House Dems call on HHS for 12-month supplies of birth control
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House Democrats are urging the Department of Health and Human Services to issue new rules that would require health insurance companies to cover a one-time, 12-month supply of birth control without cost-sharing.

In a letter sent Thursday, Reps. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) and Rep. Suzanne BonamiciSuzanne Marie BonamiciPelosi, Blumenaur condemn 'egregious abuses of power' by Trump against Oregon protestors Federal agents deployed to Portland did not have training in riot control: NYT US attorney calls for investigation into unmarked federal agents arresting protesters in Oregon MORE (D-Ore.) asked HHS to use its existing authority to change the way insurance companies cover birth control prescriptions.

Many health insurance companies now limit their coverage, without cost-sharing, to a one- or three-month supply of birth control, which experts say can lead to unwanted gaps in birth control use and an increased incidence of unintended pregnancies.

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“Birth control has helped give women the freedom to decide when they want to start a family, and providing a 12-month supply ensures that women can plan long-term rather than for a few months at a time,” Speier said. “Women today are often busy with work and managing child care, which makes picking up a monthly prescription impractical.” 

Citing a study from the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), Speier said the odds of pregnancy decrease by 30 percent for women who received a full year’s worth of pills at one time, compared to women who received either one or three months of pills at a time.

Oregon and the District of Columbia have passed 12-month dispensing laws, and New York has added a similar measure to its women’s health/contraceptive bill package. California and Washington State are considering similar measures.