July 17, 2014 — Although the Supreme Court has ruled that certain companies may exclude contraceptive coverage from their employer-sponsored health plans, most insured women will still be able to obtain contraception without out-of-pocket costs, Kaiser Health News/NPR's "Shots" reports.
The Supreme Court's ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby did not undo an Affordable Care Act (PL 111-148) provision that requires most health plans to cover preventive services, including FDA-approved contraceptives, without cost-sharing by consumers. Rather, the high court said that "closely held" companies can refuse to provide contraceptive coverage in their health plans if the businesses' owners have religious objections.
Even before the ACA expanded contraceptive coverage, the majority of employers offered it in their health plans, according to a 2010 Kaiser Family Foundation employer health benefits survey.
Adam Sonfield, a senior public policy associate at the Guttmacher Institute, said many employers view the coverage as beneficial because covering birth control is less costly than expenses related to maternity and delivery care (Andrews, KHN/NPR's "Shots," 7/15).