Bill to Expand Contraception For Military Women Introduced

By Joe Gullo

Published 07/30 2014 11:43AM

Updated 07/30 2014 11:55AM

WASHINGTON - A bill to expand contraception for military women and dependents was introduced in the U.S. Senate.

A press release says the Access to Contraception for Women Servicemembers and Dependents Acts of 2014 would require the Department of Defense to develop and implement family planning counseling for all servicewomen at specific points during her service. If passed, military women would have access to all FDA-approved contraception with no health insurance co-pay.

“Female service members deserve access to the same basic health care as the women they protect and it’s unacceptable that they don’t,” U.S. Senator and Bill Sponsor Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) said. “Giving women in the military access to basic preventative health care, including contraception and family planning counseling, will strengthen our military as a whole. And it will make sure that women who get their health insurance from the military never have to worry about how they’re going to pay for their contraception.”

According to a press release, studies have shown that the rate of unplanned pregnancy in the military is estimated to be up to 50 percent higher than the unplanned pregnancy rate among civilian women.

The legislation is co-sponsored by Senators Harry Reid (D-NV), Patty Murray (D-WA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Al Franken (D-MN), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Jon Tester (D-MT) and Mark Begich (D-AK).

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