Are oral contraceptives healthcare?

  1. 2
    My fiance is very angry to mandate that oral contraceptives should be paid for by health insurance. I feel it is a woman's right, and it is a medication, in additional to medical uses besides preventing pregnancy. But is it a health care issue to prevent pregnancy, like a medication that treats a disease, such as insulin? Or is that beside the point, because it is a choice? It is a useful medication for the personal choice of deciding when and if a woman will conceive. It will save millions of dollars in healthcare for the cost of unwanted deliveries, illnesses during pregnancy, not to mention the savings for raising children, their healthcare and education. Your respectful opinions are appreciated.
    JZ_RN and Joe V like this.
  2. Get our hottest nursing topics delivered to your inbox.

  3. 125 Comments so far...

  4. 8
    I get confused about a few things with religion and healthcare. I just wonder what kinds of slippery slopes could happen. Could Jehovah's Witnesses insurance programs refuse to pay for blood transfusions? What about epidurals, or any pain relief for women during childbirth, as many religions refer to the pain as punishment for 'original sin'. What about the religions that believe that prayer is the only answer. Should they run a business and refuse to offer any insurance because they believe their god will cure everything?

    I am using a hormonal replacement for a medical problem (PCOS) that is relatively common among women. Chances are, without fertility treatments, I couldn't get pregnant. My treatment for PCOS is birth control (I use Mirena, an IUD that releases a progestin hormone). It helps treat the symptoms of my illness. It costs about $800 and lasts up to 5 years. In my opinion, this is a medical device, and not really 'birth-control' as I most likely can't have children. I would be very upset to find that medical treatment was denied to me because someone thinks I'm "having too much sex" with my husband.

    On the "flip side". Insurance doesn't, that I know of, pay for condoms. It may (or may not) pay for other forms of birth control. While I think it should.
    sandi1743, Tiffanybaybay, Lovely_RN, and 5 others like this.
  5. 19
    Insurance pays for viagra, therefore I think it is only fair to cover BCP. Plus, some people take them for medical reasons and to regulate their cycles, hormones, irregular menstrual cycles. And it is not over the counter. I need to see and MD to get them and they require a prescription then insurance will have to cover it. Otherwise they should be otc.
    sandi1743, sapphire18, fuzzywuzzy, and 16 others like this.
  6. 2
    I totally agree with the two previous posters. I take birth control to replace hormones and to actually have my cycle at all. There are so many other reasons to take birth control other than pregnancy prevention.
    RunnerRN2b2014 and nurse0520 like this.
  7. 7
    BCP are definitely a health care issue. The problem is that morality, ethics and opinion are very hard to tease out of the whole sex/contraceptive debate. So you can talk yourself blue in the face, but if someone believes it is morally wrong to use or provide contraceptives, or if they believe it is an employers' right to make that moral call.... it can be very hard to change their mind. All people, regardless of age or gender, should have access to birth control and comprehensive sex ed, if only for the public health and societal benefits.
    fuzzywuzzy, summerRN32, Lovely_RN, and 4 others like this.
  8. 1
    I think are a health care issue because there are more than one indication for it. For patients with dysmennorrhea and menorrhagia this is one of the main treatments besides pain control.
    Psychtrish39 likes this.
  9. 13
    Health insurance, private and public, has been paying for contraception as healthcare for many years. This is not new, and 30 states already had laws saying that all insurance providers had to cover it. The National Institute of Health (who I'm sure knows better than your boyfriend does) decided that contraception was healthcare years ago. There are numerous reasons to use contraception, including the important fact that allowing women to plan and space out their pregnancies results in healthier women and healthier children. Contraception is covered under health insurance in every modern country.

    No offense but your fiance is either ignorant of the past couple of decades' health policy and/or has some misogynistic ideas. Keep your eyes wide open for other red flags before you bind yourself to him legally and give him a say in your and your future children's healthcare.
    GHGoonette, Psychtrish39, Nurse Leigh, and 10 others like this.
  10. 2
    We are both divorced and our children are already raised; between the two of us, my three dtrs and his one dtr, are grown women, employed in good careers, college grads and are all probably on birth control. Without it they probably would never be where they are today. Some are choosing not to have children, but may change their minds later. I support oral contraceptives as a necessary healthcare need.
    GHGoonette and Bella'sMyBaby like this.
  11. 4
    Quote from cargalrn
    t will save millions of dollars in healthcare for the cost of unwanted deliveries, illnesses during pregnancy, not to mention the savings for raising children, their healthcare and education. Your respectful opinions are appreciated.
    Don't forget about the massive numbers of abortions prevented by birth control.

    If religious institutions are going to be employers and provide healthcare, then they have to provide healthcare.
  12. 7
    Yes, oral contraceptives absolutely are healthcare! Not just for "the other issues" but for BIRTH CONTROL! Yes, employers absolutely should be providing it as part of insurance coverage. I can't believe we, as healthcare providers, even need to debate this issue.
    summerRN32, PMFB-RN, KaroSnowQueen, and 4 others like this.


Top