Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, 47 million women will receive specific, in many cases live-saving benefits starting today, August 1, 2012.
Insurance companies will now be required to cover eight preventative care services without “cost-sharing.” Translation: For these services, there are no longer co-pays or deductibles.
- Well-woman visits. These annual check-ups include age-appropriate treatments and screenings, such as mammograms and pap smears.
- Screening for gestational diabetes. Particularly important for pregnant women and their families.
- Testing for the human papilloma-virus, or HPV. This common disease can increase risk for cancer if left unchecked.
- Counseling for sexually transmitted infections.
- Counseling and screening for HIV.
- Patient education and counseling for contraceptive methods.
- Breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling.
- Screening and counseling for interpersonal and domestic violence.
Like the rest of the Affordable Care Act, offering these preventative services reduces health care costs in the long run. A study found that 52 percent of women report delaying needed care and screenings because of cost, which in many cases leads to needing more expensive, invasive treatments later in life.
Just a reminder, as well, that House Republicans have voted to repeal these provisions not once, not twice, but 33 times. They have voted on zero job-creation bills.