6 Questions About Contraception Coverage And The Supreme Court

Customers enter a Hobby Lobby store on March 25, in Antioch, Calif.i i

hide captionCustomers enter a Hobby Lobby store on March 25, in Antioch, Calif.


Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Customers enter a Hobby Lobby store on March 25, in Antioch, Calif.

Customers enter a Hobby Lobby store on March 25, in Antioch, Calif.

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

One of the most watched issues before the Supreme Court this term may turn on the question of religious freedom. But it will also likely determine how women will be able to access a key provision of the Affordable Care Act – one seeking to guarantee no-cost prescription contraception in most health insurance plans.

The justices’ ruling on Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores and Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp v. Sebelius, two cases that are being considered together, is expected by the end of this month. The court will decide whether those companies, and potentially all other for-profit companies, must abide by the so-called contraceptive mandate. It’s a complicated legal thicket, so here is some background.

What is the contraceptive mandate?

The health law requires that most insurance plans provide preventive care services without out-of-pocket expense to beneficiaries. The Obama administration included all contraceptives approved by the Food and Drug Administration as part of a package of preventive services for women.

Interestingly, for many plans,

Article source: http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/06/13/321638181/6-questions-about-contraception-coverage-and-the-supreme-court?ft=1&f=131849999

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