Affordable Care Act Kicks in on "No Co-Pay Day"
On August 1, Obama’s Affordable Care Act went into effect. The most controversial part of this act was the requirement for insurance companies to offer full coverage for preventative health care services, like contraception.
The Department of Health and Human Services (which is having a big day today, as it is also National Breastfeeding Awareness Month’s opening day) sponsored the bill under the belief that women deserve the right to control the health care they receive.
HHS Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius blogged, “Women deserve to have control over their health care. Too often, they have gone without preventive services, worrying about what even $20 insurance co-pay would men to their families’ budgets and choosing to pay for groceries or rent instead. But now, thanks to the health care law, many women won’t have to make that choice.”
I’m personally jumping for joy that the government is sponsoring my right to choose when I get pregnant, to choose to breastfeed my child while maintaining a career, and to receive preventive services for gestational diabetes, cervical cancer, and HPV. To me, it is a giant weight off my shoulders that I don’t need to worry how I will pay if a female related condition becomes a part of my life.
However, I also feel that it is important to recognize the repercussions on religious freedom. Catholic advocate groups are outraged that their beliefs that contraception has no place in a medicine cabinet are being stomped on by the government. Christen Varley, the executive director or Conscience Cause commented, “The implementation of this policy marks the beginning of the end of religious freedom in our nation.”
The separation of church and state gets really fuzzy when it comes to things that the church won’t allow, but that the government does. The best thing we can do is to keep an open mind and vote on what would benefit the mass majority of our nation.
Mike Kelley, Republican Representative of Pennsylvania, even went so far as to compare today’s passing of the Affordable Care Act to the Pearl Harbor attack and the 9/11 terrorist attacks. I hardly think we can compare the governmentally acknowledged freedom of women to take care of themselves is an attack on our nation in that sense. Especially given the amount of rallying our nation did after both Pearl Harbor and 9/11.
After a terrorist attack, the United States bands together and takes care of one another. After the passing of this bill, we will only see more bi-partisan arguing and attacks on one another’s personal beliefs. What if we did band together and acknowledge the positive effects that this Act will have on our nation?
Please comment below, and share your feelings on the passing of the Affordable Care Act!