Florida Health Insurance Contraceptive Coverage
The issue of birth control being covered by insurance plans has become a heated disagreement. By 2013, the plan is for women to have more help to protect their well being and their children, and that includes coverage to pay for contraceptives. However, some Florida state officials are challenging this and other aspects of health care reform.
A lawsuit filed in federal court questions the legality of the mandate, asserting that it violates religious institutions' first amendment rights because it asserts a message that contradicts some religion's teachings. Some believe that covering contraception does not conform to what some religions, like Catholism, have been teaching for years and that religions have rights that are being violated.
Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi stressed that to force religious organizations to offer health care to employees that covers contraceptives is a violation of their rights. Bondi added that the lawsuit filed against the mandate protects religious liberty and is a clear manifestation to protect the basic rights of Americans.
This doesn't address the basic rights of Americans who hold a different view, though. President Obama has said that women need access to free contraception regardless of where they are employed, but what about the men? Some do hesitate to father children they can't feed, shelter, educate, etc.
In the U.S., death during childbirth is not even adequatelytracked by the Centers for Disease Control, so we really don't know what the health risk is for women. We do know that men also have a big stake in preventing unplanned pregnancies. Moral and financial obligations come with every baby, and someone, whether the parents or society at large, will end up paying.
In the meantime, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, as one of the defendants, preferred not to comment on pending litigation. Congress however seeks impending action regarding the matter before a judge rules on the case. Florida Health Insurance could be impacted.
The issue of contraception, sterilization, and abortion was discussed during anti-abortion legislation at the House of Representatives. In this particular session, Rep. Scott Plakon filed an amendment aimed to prevent insurance companies from being required to give financial aid for the issue. However, the amendment was later withdrawn by the proponent, who preferred to attach the proposal on another piece of legislation in order to prevent jeopardizing the status of the anti-abortion bill. Although the amendment was withdrawn, democrat Rep. Elaine Schwarts criticized the amendment saying it is a clear violation of women's rights.
Congress expects much opposition on this issue, including legislation sponsored by Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida. He wanted to abolish the mandate for covering contraception. Some people in Florida state government offices also strongly oppose the health care reform law. Whether we'll see this law being implemented or not remains to be seen.
The consequences of how this turns out may ultimately expand far beyond Florida. When a state denies residents, at least someof its citizens have the option of moving. Some states, counties, and even cities are having great success by working hard with smart ideas to provide health care for virtually everyone.
Do people who can't get health care in places like Florida migrate? At least one man publicly says he left Florida because "they don't care if you live or die there." After a $66,000 hip replacement surgery, he's getting government help to find employment now that he can walk without pain. Thanks to government programs, he only spent $1,200 on the surgery.
He's grateful and optimistic that he will be able find work and be able to support himself. He already has an interview. As you may have guessed, Florida officials did nothing to help so another state has done everything, including pay the medical bills, to get this man back to work.
by: Wiley Long