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Health Reform: Implications for Women’s Access to Coverage and Care

This issue brief, Health Reform: Implications for Women’s Access to Coverage and Care, reviews how the Affordable Care Act is expected to affect access to care and affordability of health coverage for women. It also explains the provisions in the health reform law related to preventive screening services, reproductive health, maternity care and women on Medicare. The brief includes national and state-level estimates of the percentage of uninsured women ages 18-64 who are likely to qualify for federal help under the law and a summary of key coverage and benefits provisions in the health reform law that affect women.

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll — May 2012

The May Health Tracking Poll focuses on the public’s perceptions and reactions to women’s reproductive health reemerging as a heated issue in policy debates and news and its potential impact on the upcoming presidential election. Three in ten women (31 percent) overall believe that there is currently a “wide-scale effort…

Statutory Requirements & Policies Governing U.S. Global Family Planning and Reproductive Health Efforts

This issue brief provides a summary of the major policies and statutory requirements governing U.S. participation in international family planning and reproductive health efforts. These laws and policies collectively direct how funds are spent, which organizations receive funds and generally shape U.S. family planning and reproductive health activities around the world.

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll — August 2011

The August tracking poll examines the views of Americans without health insurance, with a particular focus on how they think the health reform law will affect them. Findings from the poll include: Although estimates are that 32 million uninsured Americans will gain coverage under the ACA, only about half of…

How Does Where You Work Affect Your Contraceptive Coverage?

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires most private health insurance plans to provide coverage for a broad range of preventive services including FDA approved prescription contraceptives and services for women. Legal challenges and recently issued rules have affected contraceptive coverage for many women.

Potential Supreme Court Decision: Who Will Bear the Coverage “Burdens?”

The Supreme Court is expected to reach a decision by the end of June, 2014 on the cases brought forth by Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties, two for profit corporations challenging the ACA’s contraceptive coverage requirement. The plaintiffs contend that the requirement that they include coverage for certain contraceptive services (emergency contraceptive pills and intrauterine devices) in the insurance plans “substantially burdens” both the corporation’s and the owners’ religious rights. During the arguments, several of the justices discussed the extent to which the corporations did or not did not have a choice in offering coverage to their workers. In this brief, we explore some of the factors influencing coverage decisions and possible consequences for women and employers given possible Supreme Court decision options: either upholding the contraceptive coverage requirement, or in favor of Hobby Lobby.

Women and Health Care in the Early Years of the ACA: Key Findings from the 2013 Kaiser Women’s Health Survey

This report addresses a wide range of topics that are at the heart of women’s health care, as well as changes that women may experience as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The findings in the report, based off a nationally representative survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, highlight differences in health care for uninsured, low-income, and minority women. Other focus areas include: coverage, access, and affordability; connections to health providers; access and utilization of preventive services; and reproductive and sexual health services for women of reproductive age, such as contraception and family planning services and screenings for sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

A Guide to the Supreme Court’s Review of the Contraceptive Coverage Requirement

This issue brief dissects the issues raised by the legal challenges to the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that private insurance plans include contraception as part of their coverage of preventive services for women. Over 40 for-profit corporations and over 40 nonprofit corporations have filed lawsuits claiming that the requirement to provide their employees with contraceptives violates their religious rights. On November 26, 2013, the Supreme Court agreed to hear two cases filed by for-profit corporations, Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties, that claim that this requirement violates their religious rights. At the crux of these cases is a question that the Supreme Court has not previously addressed: Do for-profit corporations have religious protections under the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment? The brief provides background on how the ACA’s contraceptive requirement works, summarizes some of the legal challenges brought by for-profit and non-profit organizations and discusses the implications of potential rulings by the Supreme Court.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.