Attacks on Obamacare are attacks on women’s health and well-being.

The title of this blog post is taken from a call out statement contained in a report prepared by the Center for American Progress as is the quote below. This type of reporting, propaganda or whatever you want to call it represents the worst of politics. The intent is to further polarize Americans by segmenting this group or that and playing on elements of their self-interest.

A quick reading of the first paragraph below and some would conclude that 45 million women first obtained these services because of Obamacare [note how suddenly the President’s supporters have adopted the once pejorative “Obamacare.”]. The reality is that the 45 million who had such service, most of whom would have had them in any case, have gotten them for “free” and the “free” part is supposed to be a good thing. There probably is no need, but I can’t help but remind readers these services are not “free” at all and such claims are further evidence of either the naivety of proponents or simply their overwhelming desire to promote their agenda despite the facts.

And of course, we can’t forget the insurance industry abuses against women. Never miss an opportunity to take a shot at the scapegoat of choice.

Denial of coverage for “gender-related pre-existing conditions”…  as opposed to non-gender-related conditions? Has anyone ever stopped to ask why all these people women, men or otherwise waited until they had pre-existing conditions to apply for insurance?  Has anyone asked why children were prevented from coverage for pre-existing conditions when it was universally possible to enroll a newborn without such restrictions provided such enrollment occurred within a certain period?  Employer plans have always required a new child or spouse to be enrolled within a specific number of days or to wait until the next open enrollment period. Is that unreasonable to protect against gaming the system and to protect the employer and fellow workers against adverse selection costs? Oh wait, it does require the exercise of personal responsibility and we all know that is a no, no.

Thanks to Obamacare, more than 45 million women have already taken advantage of recommended preventive services, including mammograms, pap smears, prenatal care, well-baby care, and well-child care with no cost sharing such as co-pays and deductibles. Starting this August, millions more will be able to obtain contraception, annual well-woman care (a visit with a gynecologist), screening for gestational diabetes, breastfeeding counseling and supplies, and screening for sexually transmitted infections, including HIV and the Human papillomavirus—again at no extra cost.

In addition, women will no longer encounter discrimination in the health insurance market in the form of lost maternity coverage, higher premiums due to their gender, and denials of coverage for gender-related pre-existing conditions. Indeed, close to 9 million women will gain coverage for maternity care in the individual market starting in 2014. And provisions in the new health law that protect everyone will especially benefit women, who utilize the health care system the most.  In short, Obamacare will increase health insurance coverage for women, lower their health care costs, and end the worst insurance industry abuses against them.

Look past the rhetoric on both sides of the health care debate, look at the unintended consequences of the promises made. Consider the promises of “free.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s