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Ongoing Implementation Challenges to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s Contraceptive Mandate

Published:December 06, 2016DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2016.10.014
      Perhaps among the most notable achievements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) is the requirement that private health insurance plans cover contraceptive counseling, services, and Food and Drug Administration (FDA)–approved methods without cost sharing. Since 2013, decreased out-of-pocket medical expenditures for contraceptives have benefited millions of insured women in the U.S.

      Kaiser Family Foundation. Women and health in the early years of the Affordable Care Act. https://kaiserfamilyfoundation.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/8590-women-and-health-care-in-the-early-years-of-the-affordable-care-act.pdf. Published 2014. Accessed April 22, 2016.

      • Becker N.V.
      • Polsky D.
      Women saw large decrease in out-of-pocket spending for contraceptives after ACA mandate removed cost sharing.
      Highly effective long-acting reversible methods (LARCs), including intrauterine devices (IUDs) and implants, have now become more readily accessible options for many more with the ACA’s elimination of high up-front insertion procedure and device costs. In tandem, increased coverage (greater prescription supply, reduced co-pays) of oral contraceptive pills and other refillable forms as a result of the ACA has removed important financial barriers to more commonly used methods. Ultimately, the hope is that the contraceptive mandate will increase access to effective contraception, thereby supporting planned pregnancies and improving outcomes for women, their families, and society.
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