News Contraception

Des Moines Register Comes Out Against Insurance-Covered Birth Control

Robin Marty

In the oddest explanation ever, the Iowa newspaper worries that free birth control might convince people to obtain "more health care than they need."

Did you know that if you make birth control free, then everyone would want it, whether they need it or not?  At least, that appears to be the argument the Des Moines Register editorial board is using against insurance coverage for contraception.

Via the Des Moines Register:

[I]f you look at the bigger picture of health care, there is a danger in requiring insurers to pay the entire cost of services. Namely, it ensures patients have no financial “skin in the game” when it comes to paying for care.

When an insurer picks up the entire tab for a medical service or drug, patients do not think twice about the expense.

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Americans need to do a lot more thinking about how much health care costs. We need to ask questions about what care is really necessary — regardless of who is paying for it — to get spending under control.

This is exactly why co-payments and deductibles are necessary in health insurance. They help to prevent the overuse of care, something Americans are globally notorious for.

If you have to pay a higher co-payment for a brand name drug out of your own pocket, you might ask for a cheaper generic. If you have a cough or headache, the difference between waiting a few days to see if you are feeling better and rushing to the doctor may be a $20 co-pay at the office.

See, if there were free birth control, you might not wait a few days to see if you really need that sex.

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