Contraceptive Coverage and the Balance Between Conscience and Access image

JAMA, October 19, 2017
Ronit Y. Stahl and Holly Fernandez Lynch (Former Executive Director, Academic Fellow Alumna)

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When the Obama administration included contraception in the essential benefits package to be covered by employer-sponsored health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act, it sought to preserve access for women while addressing the concerns of employers with religious objections. Although the accommodations and exemptions were not enough for some employers, balance was the ultimate goal. This also was reflected in Zubik v Burwell, the Supreme Court’s most recent decision on the matter; on May 16, 2016, the justices remanded the litigants to the lower court so they could be afforded the opportunity to reach a compromise between religious exercise and seamless contraceptive coverage. No further compromise was forthcoming.

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bioethics contraception health care reform health law policy holly fernandez lynch insurance public health reproductive rights