August 11th, 2009


Health care reform & abortions - Myth vs Reality

1. MYTH: Health care reform would result in the greatest expansion of abortion since Roe v. Wade.
REALITY: Currently, the majority of plans already cover basic reproductive health care, including abortion care. In fact, more than 86 percent of employer-based insurance plans cover abortion care. That's why anti-choice groups are working so hard to strip reproductive health from health care reform — in order to strip women of coverage they currently have.

2. MYTH: Taxpayer money would be used to pay for abortions in the public plan.
REALITY: Opponents of reproductive health care are trying to confuse people into thinking that the public plan is a government-funded health plan like Medicaid or Medicare — it is not. The public health insurance plan would operate like any private insurance plan would. It would be funded and paid for by private individual premiums, in the same way a private insurance plan is. Therefore, there is no reason to treat any coverage issue, including abortion coverage, differently in the public health insurance plan than in private plans.

3. MYTH: Health care reform will "mandate" abortion coverage.
REALITY: Nothing in any of the current health care reform bills mandates abortion coverage — or any other type of health care service. Opponents of women's health and health care reform are trying to hijack health care reform to push for unprecedented prohibitions on abortion coverage in the private marketplace.

Health care reform & women's health

Health care reform is important for women's health!

Get the facts:
  • Women are more vulnerable to high health care costs because women’s reproductive health requires more regular contact with health care providers, including visits for yearly Pap tests, mammograms, and obstetric care.
  • Women of childbearing age spend 68 percent more in out-of-pocket health care costs than men, in part because of reproductive health-related supplies and services.
  • Roughly 16.7 million women are uninsured, and thus likely to postpone care and delay or forgo important preventive care, such as cancer screenings.

Health care reform & rationing care - myth vs reality

Q: I have heard many people worry that health care will be "rationed" under health reform.  Is that true?

A: Health Insurance Reform will end current forms of rationing, not expand it.

First, there is widespread rationing in today’s system. Right now, decisions about what doctor you can see and what treatment you can receive are made by insurance companies, which routinely deny coverage because of cost or the insurance company rules. Health reform will do away with many of those rules that result in rationing today.

Health Insurance Reform will prevent insurance companies from denying coverage because you have a pre-existing condition; prevent them for canceling coverage because you get sick; ban annual and lifetime limits on coverage, which often force people to pay huge sums out of pocket if they develop a serious illness; and prevent discrimination based on gender.

With health insurance reform, we will also put treatment decisions back into the hands of doctors in consultation with their patients.
One of the reasons we spend too much on health care today is that our incentives are perverse: Doctors are paid by the procedure, rather than for quality.

Right now roughly 100,000 Americans die every year from medical errors, which, in many cases, were the result of treatments that were wrong for them. We want to reduce preventable hospital re-admissions that are frequently caused because patients are not getting the right care in the first place. We want to give doctors the ability to make the best treatment decisions for you and your family.