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U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius joins Democratic senators at a news conference on Capitol Hill July 31, 2012 in Washington, DC. Sebelius and members of the Democratic caucus announced new preventive health coverage for women that takes effect August 1 for new insurance plans because as part of the Affordable Care Act. Also pictured are (L-R) Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD).
Being a woman in America is about to become a little more affordable. Starting tomorrow, American women will receive free access to preventive care through their insurance companies as a stipulation of the Affordable Care Act. Free services and provisions will include domestic violence screenings, FDA-approved contraception, breast feeding supplies and related counseling.
In California, the implementation of the policy will provide free preventive health care and supplies to more than 5 million women, according to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
The Affordable Care Act remains as a divisive federal policy despite last month’s ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court mostly upholding the Act. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he will continue to press for the repeal of the new health care laws while California Democrat Barbara Boxer responded by saying “the Republicans today have relaunched their war against women.”
Do you welcome free preventive care for women in the United States? Should health care providers be forced to give preventive care to all women for free? Many of the preventive measures went into effect as far back as 2010; have you noticed a difference in the cost of your health care? Are you more or less satisfied? Do you have questions about what to expect?
Usha Ranji, associate director for Women’s Health Policy at the Henry J. Kaiser Foundation, a non-partisan foundation that specializes in health policy analysis