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MA Contraceptive Reform Update

By: Jen McCormick, Esq.

The continually evolving health care rules and regulations may be unsettling for employers, particularly if they are trying to finalize their 2018 benefit offerings. In addition, this unease may create confusion for employees trying to weigh their options for health care for next year.  Massachusetts women, however, shouldn’t have to worry about whether contraceptives will be available at no cost.

Despite the potential changes and uncertainty that may exist at the federal level, the Massachusetts House passed a bill last week to create clarity for these benefits for women. This bill would ensure that women retain access to no cost birth control, apart from what may happen with ACA.  Note that Massachusetts is not alone in trying to codify contraception requirements, as other states have taken measures to match the federal requirements.

The interesting piece of this Massachusetts reform, however, is that the bill would further expand the ACA requirement by permitting women to access a 12 month supply (after a three month trial), instead of limiting the supply to the typical one to three months at a time.  The Massachusetts House bill will go to the Senate next. Many believe that the bill will proceed with support.  




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