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healthcare

411 on Birth Control in an ACA World

Wondering why you had to pay for birth control recently when you thought it would be free?

So did MomsRising members.

Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve received questions from women who have tried to fill their birth control prescription with their new marketplace coverage (believing there be no co-pay) to find that they had to pay for the prescription.  In response to these questions, I wrote this blog post to help our community know why this is happening and that there are options available.  

Why am I being charged for my birth control?

ACA compliant plans “must cover contraceptive methods and counseling for all women” and plans “must cover the services without charging a copayment, coinsurance, or deductible.” This is absolutely on point, but what it means is that all methods of birth control must be covered, but not necessarily all brands—some times referred to as tiers (1, 2, 3, or 4) or formulas.

10 things you should know about using your new ACA health coverage

You’re insured—YAY! Now it’s time to access your coverage. Using new coverage for the first time can be daunting—but don’t worry! Here’s a list of 10 things to know about using your health coverage.

1. What does my new ACA health insurance cover?

If you recently purchased insurance on your state or federal marketplace, you can expect your new health insurance to cover in-network doctor visits, hospitalizations, prescriptions (there may be coverage level variations based on prescription type), maternity care, infant care, mental health, and additional preventative care services. These are part of the 10 essential health benefits now covered because of the new healthcare law.

2. What does mean when the insurance company says I need to find a provider?

Still No Medicaid Expansion In Florida

The Florida legislative session ends today without a clear resolution for Medicaid expansion. In response to the silence from those representing us, healthcare activists stood together this morning in order to bring their voices as one and ask Governor Rick Scott and our legislators to find a solution for those Floridians in urgent need of healthcare coverage.

We often forget the faces, don’t we? We hear about causes and hear about situations that shouldn’t be happening but numbers are just numbers and it's not until you are standing in front of a woman like Mary Johnson, uninsured and in desperate need of care, that we are reminded that behind those numbers is the face of a mother, father, sister, brother, friend that is in need.

In search of stories to put a name to a number, we have come across a great deal of people afraid to speak out. Afraid that speaking will change nothing or just afraid of being stereotyped for needing assistance. Mary's quiet voice rang out today as she told us about herself, about not having coverage, recently losing her job and being displaced.

Closing the Gap for Children: Health Coverage for All

California has been a health reform trailblazer, enrolling over 1.3 million individuals in Covered California and 1.9 million people through Medi-Cal as of April 15. Missing from this picture, however, are the estimated one million children and families who remain uninsured and ineligible for coverage due to their immigration status.

On April 30, 2014, California will have an historic opportunity to remedy that profound inequity. SB 1005 by Senator Ricardo Lara will be heard in the Senate Health Committee. The legislation merits the support and attention of our leaders.

Maryland is 19th State to Enact a Law against Shackling Pregnant Women

Maryland is now the 19th state with a law against shackling pregnant women.

The law aims to protect women and teens from the unsafe and needlessly traumatic use of restraints during pregnancy, labor and childbirth, and postpartum recovery.

It sets new standards for every prison, jail, and juvenile detention facility in the state to follow.

Rebecca Swope gave birth when she was incarcerated in Maryland nine years ago. She reflects on what passage of the bill means to her:

Did this mom have to die?

Take Action

The answer is no.

Charlene Dill, a Florida mom of three, died on March 21st while working one of three part-time jobs—and her passing could have been prevented if the Florida Legislature had simply acted in time.

Florida state leaders have chosen not to expand Medicaid health coverage for thousands of Floridians—rejecting 15 million dollars, per day, that would help provide affordable health coverage to people like Charlene.

​CREDIT: GOFUNDME VIA THINK PROGRESS

I’m ashamed of the leadership in my home state—or rather their lack of leadership. It’s heartbreaking and infuriating to read Charlene’s story, because this just didn’t need to happen to her and her family. 

Sex Education 2.0

By Leslie Kantor, Vice President of Education, Planned Parenthood Federation of America

If your teen is anything like mine, it can be nearly impossible to get him away from his phone! Knowing that it’s such an integral part of their lives, and that teens want to get information on their phones from trustworthy sources instantaneously, Planned Parenthood is giving them both what they want and what they need: an entertaining way to make plans for their futures, learn skills to resist peer pressure, make healthy decisions, and encourage them to talk to you — all while using their phones.  

Planned Parenthood launched nine new tools designed for cell phones — and because they need different information at different ages, there is a set of tools for middle-school aged teens and another for high-school aged teens. They can be used on any phone or computer that can go online and don’t require Smartphone capability. 

 

Exciting New Developments for Domestic Violence Survivors Who Need Help Paying for Health Insurance

Thanks to recent IRS guidance —and an extended deadline (through May 30!) to sign-up for health insurance—domestic violence survivors who are living apart from an abusive spouse can now access subsidies to help them afford the cost of health insurance.  Until now, unless a married couple was legally separated or met very narrow head of household filing status requirements, they had to file their taxes jointly in order to be eligible for subsidies to help them afford health insurance through the Obamacare Marketplaceno exceptions.  The new IRS guidance makes it clear that domestic violence survivors who filed their taxes separately to avoid interactions with a violent spouse can still access these valuable health care subsi

Our kids need to talk about mental health

Txt Msg Action!

Finding ways for our kids to talk about mental illness and mental health is really important.  I live near Washington DC and had to read last week about a local high school with 6 suicides in the past two years. Two of the kids were 15 years old. Imagining the pain of the parents of these kids almost made me sick. It does make me ache.  I'm a mother of a now grown child who was very, very sick with bipolar disorder and anxiety as a teenager so this strikes very close to home.  

#FoodFri Tweetchat: If you can't sell it, why advertise it?

Join @MomsRising and @PreventObesity this Friday, 4/18/14 at 1 p.m. EST / 10am PST for #NoMoreJunkAds, our #FoodFri tweetchat focused on creating a healthier school environment.Parents scored a huge victory last year when we won the Smart Snacks rule. Now snacks sold in school vending machines and a la carte lines must meet nutrition guidelines during the 2014-2015 school year.However, no rule is currently in place for what can advertised in schools. Advertising and marketing to children in schools requires special consideration because the food industry is reaching children in an environment where parents have little or no oversight or ability to consent, and because students should have a learning environment that does not include messages that undermine nutrition and health education.Our positions is...

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