Today’s the day. Under President Obama’s health care reform law, insurance companies must begin providing no co-pay contraception. But the ins and outs of it are much more complex, and as it is, only a fraction of the 98 million women in the U.S. will qualify.

At a very basic level, only so many women will be eligible because only so many women in the U.S. are insured. According to the CDC, 16 percent of women under the age of 60 have no health insurance, but the numbers are higher when we zero in on different subgroups. More than one in ten white women are uninsured, as are 37 percent of Latinas and 22 percent of black women. Nearly 34 percent of all Native American women and over 18 percent of Asian and Pacific Islander American women have no insurance.

But if you’re a woman with private health insurance and your plan fits the various restrictions, you may be eligible for free birth control. The National Women’s Law Center has a handy guide, including a script, for you to figure out if, when and how you can begin to receive no co-pay contraception.

Here’s an opening question for the health insurance representative who picks up the line on the other end, provided you’ve got the right plan.

Hi. I understand that, under the health care law, new health plans will be providing coverage for women’s preventive services, such as a well woman visit and birth control, with no cost sharing. I am trying to find out whether my plan will be providing these services. Can you tell me when my next plan year or policy year starts and whether my plan is grandfathered under the health care law?

Check out the rest of the guide for more.

Read this online at http://colorlines.com/archives/2012/08/are_you_eligible_for_no_co-pay_birth_control_a_handy_guide_to_find_out.html


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