Today the U.S. Supreme Court decided to uphold the Affordable Care Act, a decision that will have a profound and concrete impact on millions of people’s lives. The Affordable Care Act is the greatest advance in women’s health in a generation
- it will provide access to birth control and cancer screenings without co-pays, guaranteed direct access to OB/GYN providers without referrals, and an end to discriminatory practices against women, such as charging women higher premiums and denying coverage for pre-existing conditions.
We're absolutely thrilled about this decision. Affordable, quality health care will now be available to millions of women who had no coverage or inadequate coverage before.
At Planned Parenthood of Illinois, we know how important this law and this decision are for women and families, because we see the need for affordable health care every day. Nearly 50% of our patients live at or below the federal poverty level and struggle to pay for cancer screenings, birth control, and other health services. The Affordable Care Act will make essential health care available to all women across the country.
How will the Affordable Care Act impact Americans?
· More than 45 million women nationwide have already received coverage for preventive health screenings at no cost since August 2010 thanks to the Affordable Care Act – including mammograms and Pap tests – and millions more will be able to get free screenings in the coming years.
· 3.1 million young adults nationwide have already been able to stay on their parents’ insurance because of the Affordable Care Act. In the next year, millions more who would have otherwise lost coverage will continue to be insured under their parents’ plan.
· Women are guaranteed direct access to OB/GYN providers without a referral, as a result of the Affordable Care Act.
· Starting in August, birth control will be treated like any other preventive prescription under the Affordable Care Act, and will be available without co-pays or deductibles.
As a result of the Affordable Care Act, 17 million women nationwide will be newly insured, including 469,469 women in Illinois.
This is a huge victory for the American people, and we thank President Obama and the members of Congress who passed the Affordable Care Act for their leadership on this issue. And of course we thank you - supporters of women's health for making your voices heard about the importance of the Affordable Care Act.
We're looking forward to continuing to provide quality reproductive health services across Illinois. Our 17 health centers currently provide health care to more than 75,000 women, men, and teens every year. More than 90 percent of our health services are preventive, including cancer screenings, birth control, and STD testing and treatment.
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