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US Justice Blocks Implementation of ACA Contraceptive Mandate 903

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the can-we-just-have-communist-care-instead? dept.
theodp writes "First approved for contraceptive use in the U.S. in 1960, 'The Pill' is currently used by more than 100 million women worldwide and by almost 12 million women in the U.S. But just hours before the Affordable Care Act was to go into effect, Justice Sonia Sotomayor issued a stay temporarily blocking a mandate requiring health insurance coverage of birth control, and gave the Obama administration until Friday to respond to the Supreme Court on the matter. Sotomayor's order applies to a group of nuns, the Little Sisters of the Poor, and other Roman Catholic nonprofit groups that use the same health plan, known as the Christian Brothers Employee Benefit Trust (PDF). The group is one of many challenging the federal requirement for contraceptive coverage, but a decision on the merits of that case by the full Supreme Court could have broader implications. One imagines Melinda Gates is none too pleased. So, will U.S. health care require a Department of Personal Belief Exemptions that are dictated by employers (PDF, 'The Trustees of CBEBT and the management of Christian Brothers Services are dedicated to protecting the employers participating in the CBEBT from having to face the choice of violating their faith or violating the law')?"
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US Justice Blocks Implementation of ACA Contraceptive Mandate

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  • Re:How is this (Score:2, Informative)

    by RobertLTux (260313) <[robert] [at] [laurencemartin.org]> on Wednesday January 01, 2014 @01:53PM (#45837895)

    Part of the problem is if they don't get a cutout on this then they won't get a cutout on say Abortion Coverage (which many Christians considered Murder). Plus there is the nasty trick of the Morning After Pill which is considered a contraceptive but is in reality an Abortion Pill.

    There needs to be cutouts for a great many things (like pregnancy coverage for MALES and Prostate Coverage for FEMALES).

    oh btw i stand as somebody that has FAILED to get coverage under ACA (i can't afford insurance and don't qualify in my state for medicare).

  • Re:All or nothing (Score:5, Informative)

    by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot@noSPam.hackish.org> on Wednesday January 01, 2014 @02:15PM (#45838101)

    In a modern healthcare system, prevention is preferred over treatment when possible, and it's generally cheaper. A healthcare system that covers only treatment but no prevention is... poorly designed, with perverse incentives that encourage people to never see a doctor or do anything about their health (because it's expensive) right up until the point that they're in the emergency room, and then we cover that. Which is precisely what people in the U.S. do (and what people nowhere else do, because no rational person would prefer going to the ER over seeing a GP, all else being equal).

    The other nice aspect of integrated health coverage is no goddamn billing and trying to screw you over with fine print.

    I used to live in the U.S., and the billing there is insane and bureaucratic. If you go to the hospital once, for one day for an outpatient procedure, you will receive bills for months afterwards. The hospital itself, the anesthesiologist, the attending physician, the surgeon, the equipment, any drugs used, everything is billed separately and uncoordinated. Half of the bills are wrongly coded and your insurance denies them, requiring hours on the phone to correct. Nobody can tell you ahead of time what the price is, and what your out-of-pocket cost will be. It's a huge mess and extremely unpleasant for everyone except the useless paper-pushers it keeps in business.

    Now I live in Denmark. If you go to the hospital, here is what happens: you go to the hospital, you have the procedure, and you leave. If appropriate, you have follow-up visits. At no point do you receive a bill or have to spend hours on the phone arguing with petty bureaucrats.

  • Re:All or nothing (Score:5, Informative)

    by BasilBrush (643681) on Wednesday January 01, 2014 @02:23PM (#45838183)

    I've heard it explained thusly: if car insurance worked like health insurance, then every time you put gas in your tank, got an oil change, bought tires, etc., you would file a claim.

    If it worked like the UK National Health Service, all those things would be free at the point of delivery.

    Everyone would pay for it in general taxation. But that amount added to taxation would be only 40% of what American's pay for their health insurance. And the payments would be progressive (more paid by the rich, less or nothing paid by the poor).

  • Re:Fuck religion. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Pliny (12671) on Wednesday January 01, 2014 @02:43PM (#45838419) Homepage

    That's rewriting history slightly. Was it "rammed through" the Senate? Certainly. Though, if memory serves, the House was under Republican control at the time. Also, for the last goddamn time, the ACA is not a *leftist* law. The "left" is still pissed at Obama and Congress about getting knifed in the back over a public option. The ACA started life on the right at the Heritage Foundatrion in 1989. It's a testament to how hard the right worked throughout the '90s and the aughts to drag the country their way that the ACA became centrist enough for Obama to latch onto it like a limpet.

  • by sjbe (173966) on Wednesday January 01, 2014 @04:14PM (#45839233)

    For some strange reason, the ACA did not fix this problem.

    Actually it mostly did fix it, albeit imperfectly. Now if I lose my employment I can still get health insurance coverage of reasonable quality for a reasonable price and I cannot be denied coverage just because I got sick previously. While I won't argue that the system is ideal (far from it), it is a MUCH better situation.

  • Re:Fuck religion. (Score:4, Informative)

    by shutdown -p now (807394) on Wednesday January 01, 2014 @05:28PM (#45839721) Journal

    Should I be allowed to ... allow my child to die from an easily cured malady because I believe in faith healing?

    No sane person would believe this, but yes, this is exactly how it works [ndaa.org] in most of the USA today.

    Secular nation my ass.

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