The last few months have been murky waters that one must wade through trying to decipher which latest political whim may derail their well-being, and which may just be the ripple of fake news. We know it can keep you up at night, especially when it could shake the very core of your health — your reproductive system. At this point it’s practically a riddle that the female population and their families are left to to decipher. The predicament is as such: The Republican Senate looks to eliminate abortion and defund clinics like Planned Parenthood. However the aftermath of this may lead to many women loosing access to free or affordable birth control. Their plan doesn’t seem to be willing to support the care of women’s contraceptive pills. So what options are we left with?
On June 22nd The Senate Budget Committee released The Better Care Act of 2017 Discussion Draft — in this draft it is made clear that it will be easier for employers to make the decision whether to cover birth control or not, or charge a copay in its employees insurance plans. Even further, it is a shared fear that women may be charged more for coverage than their male counterparts, something that Obamacare had specifically eliminated. For women in low income households this could be absolutely detrimental. The CBO (Congressional Budget Office) estimates that 15% of women with low incomes will be left without access to birth control under Trump’s plan.
A study by the IMS Institute in 2013 showed that women saved approximately $270 / per month on birth control under Obamacare. Anyone who has ever had to take the pill knows it is already an expense that women have little way around other than to just pay up, or find an alternative solution. In this predicament women are already looking for other more permanent options such the long debated IUD.
Trump has shared in the past that he does support OTC (over-the-counter) birth control. It may sound divine at first glance, but really means that this will diminish the offering of contraception pills covered by insurance companies, in turn making it very expensive to purchase. In Texas birth control was defunded back in 2013 — since this move the use of contraception has gone down and birth rates have consistently been on the rise. It seems our government refuses to look at the proof and continue to forge forward in order to have their way. Those in support of Trump’s goal to end terminated pregnancies are seriously inthe dark about how this will unfold.
It can’t be ignored that there seems to be a huge disconnect between the older men writing this discussion draft, and the voices of young women who it serves (or very much doesn’t). The reality being that birth control is just not that easy! Finding a brand that aligns perfectly with your body, and doesn’t leave you riddled with side effects can be a true trial and error process — also an expensive one. It is rarely the case that a woman finds the right match the first try, and not having the resources through her insurance to settle on a healthy option can be harmful.
Without the access to Planned Parenthood’s services and an inability to afford the pill women will be forced into terrifying and dangerous measures. This information is important for every woman to be knowledgeable about so that you can be prepared to find the safest option for yourself. We will strive to keep you in the know always, so you don’t have to look far!