Access to reproductive health care is critical for the health and economic security of all Oregonians. That’s why everyone in Oregon, regardless of income, citizenship status, gender identity or type of insurance, needs access to the full range of reproductive health services.
The Reproductive Health Equity Act (HB 3391)* is an important leap toward ensuring that all Oregonians have meaningful access to the care they need. Thousands of Oregonians still lack coverage for the full range of reproductive health services:
— The Affordable Care Act requires insurance plans to pay for the full range of FDA-approved contraceptives at 100%, but it also “grandfathered” some plans, enabling them to apply contraception cost-sharing policies that were in place prior to passage of the ACA. In Oregon, approximately 18,600 women of reproductive age receive healthcare coverage from grandfathered plans, which means they are forced to pay out-of- pocket costs for preventive health services, including contraception.
— An estimated 43,000 women of reproductive age in Oregon who purchase insurance on the Exchange, as well as an unknown number of women with employer-sponsored coverage, have policies with deductibles of $2,500 or more. While most plans cover abortion, the cost of the procedure must first come out of this deductible, leaving the procedure unaffordable and inaccessible for many.
— 48,000 women of reproductive age in Oregon are categorically excluded from Medicaid and prohibited from purchasing insurance on the Exchange due to their citizenship status, leaving them without coverage for essential health services like reproductive health care, including postpartum care.
— Transgender and gender-nonconforming Oregonians need access to services often categorized as “women’s” health care, including gender-specific cancer screenings and the full range of reproductive health services. Unfortunately, when coverage is dependent on one’s gender marker, procedural barriers can hinder access to this necessary and life-saving care.
The Reproductive Health Equity Act fills these gaps in reproductive health coverage. The Reproductive Health Equity Act ensures that Oregonians receive the full range of preventive reproductive health services at zero out-of- pocket cost, fills gaps in reproductive health coverage for those categorically excluded from health programs due to citizenship status, and prohibits discrimination in reproductive health care.
With the Reproductive Health Equity Act, more Oregonians will be able to decide if and when they have children based on what’s best for them and their family’s circumstances, and more Oregon families will have the care they need to thrive.