I love my baby. He is so sweet and his laughter makes any bad mood float away. But not only is my baby oh so sweet, he also made me aware of a breast lump. I noticed it once I started nursing him, because, really, I never really paid much attention to the issue of breast lumps and never did any self exams.
I know, I know, health groups like American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecologists advocate women to have “breast self awareness,” and to report any changes to your breasts to your health care providers. But, since I don’t have any risk factors, I just never thought I would be in trouble. Well, after finding that not-so-small lump, I felt guilty. I realized even though I’m a huge advocate of preventive health, I wasn’t doing the one simple step of taking care of myself by getting preventive health screenings. And I realize, this is what preventive health is about, it’s about taking those steps to get ahead of health concerns before the health concerns get ahead of you. Read more »
Last week at a lunch with African advocates for women’s rights, we discussed pregnancy rates in Africa and the United States. Across the continents one thing remained constant—women have better outcomes when they are able to control their fertility. They enjoy greater freedom to pursue academic studies or careers, and to plan their lives as they see fit.
Opponents to birth control have made speeches decrying the rule, hosted conferences and brought lawsuit, after lawsuit, after lawsuit... Since the lawsuits have proved to be a publicity-gaining tool, we can anticipate many more. Read more »
Tell your Members of Congress you support women's access to preventive health services without co-pays or deductibles.
Women's lives are about to get a little easier (and less expensive). Thanks to the health care law, today a provision goes into effect requiring birth control and other preventive services that women need be covered without a co-payment or a deductible! Over time, as an increasing number of new plans come under the law's reach, more women could have access to these services with no extra cost.
The preventive health services included in new plans are: well-woman visits, breastfeeding assistance and supplies, domestic violence counseling, screening for gestational diabetes, testing for high-risk strains of HPV, screening for sexually transmitted infections including HIV, and all FDA-approved methods of contraception.Read more »
I couldn’t remember the last time I had my cholesterol screened.
That probably isn’t a good thing given that there is a history of heart disease in my family. But I kept coming up with excuses not to get tested – I already have a lot of doctor appointments - I don’t have a primary care provider - I eat healthy - I’m too young to worry about cholesterol.
Eliminating the small copay for my preventive visit may not have been much, but it meant one less hurdle. I also started thinking about why these services are required to be provided with no cost sharing. Preventive services are important. Read more »
The House of Representatives is currently considering a bill, H.R. 5, which would reform medical malpractice laws. Several Congresswomen drafted an amendment to this bill which would have limited the bill’s malpractice protections if the malpractice claim is based on a violation of the health care reform law related to the women’s preventive health services. The Congresswomen went through the usual steps that an amendment must go through before it can be proposed. They worked with the Office of Legislative Counsel in drafting it. It was reviewed by the Congressional Budget Office who said its provisions would have no cost. The House Parliamentarian declared that it was germane, meaning that it was related to the underlying bill so that it could be proposed. The next step before the amendment could be debated on the floor was to have the Rules Committee allow the amendment. And then the Rules Committee attempted to silence these women, just as Rep. Issa tried to silence Sandra Fluke. Read more »
As you may have heard, the Catholic Bishops are urging the Obama administration to expand the religious refusal clause concerning contraceptives. This could allow religiously affiliated institutions that are not churches – such as hospitals, universities, Catholic Charities, and others – to refuse to cover birth control without co-pays for their students and employees. That’s even though birth control constitutes “preventive care” under the Affordable Care Act, which is mandatorily covered at no cost by insurance plans. And as we’ve been telling you, denying contraceptive coverage is harmful to women.
Women are unique. Our time spent as full time employees often coincides with our time spent as family caregivers. We are more times than not bombarded with societal double standards. But, we deal. We deal with these things every day, no matter how frustrating.
Not surprisingly, our health concerns and needs are unique. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, we can be better prepared to deal with these as well.
Greater protections against insurance company abuses.
No More Rescissions: Insurance companies are prohibited from dropping your coverage if you become sick.
No More Lifetime LIMITS: Insurance companies are prohibited from limiting the amount of money they will pay for your benefits over your lifetime.
No More Annual Caps: Insurance companies are prohibited from limiting the amount of money they will pay for benefits during one year. During 2011, annual limits cannot be lower than $750,000 & are completely prohibited by 2014.
No More Doctor’s Note To Visit The Ob-Gyn: The new health care law allows women to have “direct access” to this type of health care. Insurance companies are prohibited from requiring women to get referrals from their doctor for obstetrical & gynecological care.
Over 60,000 of you signed our petition to support no-cost birth control, and earlier today, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced it is adopting expert recommendations to require health insurers to cover contraception, along with a number of other preventive health services for women, without charging women co-payments. We got you covered – birth control without a co-pay will soon be a reality!