Access to Contraception Helps Women Overcome Barriers
Brynja Seagren, Law Student
When I first heard about the potential for contraception with no co-pays,
I immediately thought about the overarching societal benefits this would
mean for young women like me. This rule supports responsible family
planning and stability for women – specifically in regards to our pay and
striving to get to wage equity.
By creating broad and affordable access to contraception, more women can take control of their health and their budgets. Co-pay free contraception means less restrictive monthly budgets. It means help
for women with health insurance in accessing contraceptives they have
thought they could not afford.
Contraception without co-pays also means
healthier women – for example fewer STIs, and subsequent medical
Most importantly, no co-pays means more women can choose their own
paths – they can preemptively plan for their pregnancies, which allows
them to remain in the work force for longer, and for more consistent
periods of time.
Many point to pregnancy and “maternity leave,” as a historic explanation
of the wage gap. To me, more access to contraception could be a step to
finally achieving “equal pay for equal work.”
Co-pay free contraception gives women the power to control their own
health and achieve financial stability, as well as develop their job skills.
Ultimately, contraceptives without co-pays will help women be more
employable in the long-term, and significantly increase our life-time
Women make up half of our workforce. By providing more women with the
ability to live healthier lives, co-pay free contraception can help reshape
pay and wage equality for Colorado women.
My Journey With Birth Control
By Ashleigh McBeth, 29
My journey with birth control began in college. Each month I started to have painstaking cramps that would sometimes prevent me from getting out of bed. My doctor recommended that I get on birth control. I was fortunate enough to be under my parents insurance and it was covered.
Unfortunately, that day ended when I graduated from college and entered “the real world.” I continued and continue use my birth control to help with the cramping, keeping my cycles regular – and also preventing pregnancy. I depend on it every day – as do millions of other American women. (Heck, so do their significant others!)
Last year I had to pay nearly $100 a month for my birth control because my insurance deductible was $1250. Under that plan I had to pay for prescriptions out of pocket until I reached my deductible, then it was covered at 90%. I had this plan because it was what I could afford – and I wanted to be responsible and have health insurance. So I paid for this insurance and I paid for what I needed covered by it – my birth control.
As a young, healthy woman the only prescription I need the majority of the year is my birth control. Another important point: I essentially paid out of pocket for a pill that would prevent greater costs (my days of being a mom are in the future for a few more years) to my insurer.
The Affordable Care Act, or as it is known on the street, Obamacare, is an amazing act for women, as our medical needs are greatly different than men. We need and deserve access to preventive health services and prescriptions that meet our daily needs. I support the Affordable Care Act, because now I will have the women’s preventive coverage I need, when I need it.