Republicans Push For Over-The-Counter Birth Control, Liberals Immediately Oppose The Plan

One would think those on the Political left would be thrilled by the notion of making it easier and cheaper to obtain birth control. Nope

(The Hill) Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) is leading a new push to allow women to buy birth control without a prescription, hoping to deliver on one of the biggest promises of his freshman Senate campaign last year.

A half-dozen Senate Republicans have signed onto Gardner’s bill, which would require drug companies that sell contraceptives to file an application to sell their products over the counter.

“Most other drugs with such a long history of safe and routine use are available for purchase over the counter, and contraception should join them,” Gardner wrote in a statement. He said his bill would benefit women in rural and underserved areas, while also saving people money and time by “increasing competition and availability.”“Most other drugs with such a long history of safe and routine use are available for purchase over the counter, and contraception should join them,” Gardner wrote in a statement. He said his bill would benefit women in rural and underserved areas, while also saving people money and time by “increasing competition and availability.”

Here we go

Groups like Planned Parenthood have opposed the idea, which they argue could drive up contraception prices.

The group has pointed to ObamaCare’s contraception mandate — requiring insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved forms of birth control — and said that insurers may no longer cover the medication if it’s not prescribed by a doctor.

Typically, most products that go from prescription to OTC see an overall reduction in cost, partially since the entire system of obtaining a prescription then picking them up at the pharmacy helps to increase cost. More competition also creeps in when they go OTC.

But, doing this upsets Liberals because people might have to actually pay $5-7 dollars for a month-long allotment of birth control pills, rather than having Other People pay for them via Obamacare. Prescription birth control was given a specific carve-out per Health and Human Services rules when it comes to co-pays and deductibles, essentially making them free, unlike, say, heart medicine, which usually requires a copay, and will most likely require the person to hit their deductible (this depends on the plan picked and the state for the plan, so, of course, it’s Very Complicated).

So, the opposition is all about supporting Ocare and the medical firms that have bought into the program, monetarily rewarding those supporters. CNN ran a big story in 2012 showing that doctors supported making birth control pills OTC. You can find many other articles saying the same, a few years back.

The Hill article includes quotes from Dr. Mark DeFrancesco, president of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, saying that he and the group are against this plan. Interestingly, they were all for it long, long, long ago in 2012. This is all about propping up Ocare (as well as making money)

(Breitbart) According to a press release last week, the “Allowing Greater Access to Safe and Effective Contraception Act” would encourage contraceptive drug manufacturers to file for a “prescription-to-over-the-counter switch by allowing for priority review of the application and waiving the FDA filing fee.”

The measure provides for incentives to drug companies for any contraceptive available to adults aged 18 and above, which is deemed “safe and effective for routine OTC use” by the FDA.

The bill would also repeal Obamacare’s restrictions on consumer use of health, medical and flexible savings accounts for the purchase of OTC drugs, thus further enabling the purchase of OTC contraceptives with these types of savings accounts. Additionally, the legislation would repeal Obamacare’s annual limits on flexible savings account contributions.

“It’s time to allow women the ability to make their own decisions about safe, effective, and long-established methods of contraception,” Gardner said.

Allow women to make their own decisions? Making it easier to obtain contraceptives? Allowing the use of savings accounts? Brother, just stop. That’s freedom stuff.

Crossed at Right Wing News.

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18 Responses to “Republicans Push For Over-The-Counter Birth Control, Liberals Immediately Oppose The Plan”

  1. Zachriel says:

    “doing this upsets Liberals because people might have to actually pay $5-7 dollars for a month-long allotment of birth control pills”

    Most liberals have long advocated making birth control pills available over-the-counter. However, the Republican plan may mean many plans won’t cover the cost. Birth control pills can cost up to $150 per month, a significant cost for lower income women.

  2. david7134 says:

    The whole concept of restriction of availability and restriction of medical care to state run concepts is a progressive agenda started in 1913 with all the other progressive issues that significantly restrict freedom. In many other countries you can buy medications across the counter without a doctor’s prescription. You can even obtain pain medications that would put you in jail here. Yet, these countries do not have the drug issues that we do. Get the government out of our lives.

  3. Dana says:

    Zachriel, according to Planned Parenthood, birth control pills run from $0 to $50 a month, nowhere close to $150. Back when the lovely Sandra Fluke was saying that it was just horribly, horribly inexpensive for women like her to buy BC, a Target pharmacy less than three miles from Georgetown Law School where she was a student (tuition: $53,130 per year) was selling generic brand BC pills for $9 a month.

    It would make more sense for Obaminablecare to require insurance to pay for toothpaste, which, over the long haul, will cost more, is needed by twice as many people, and is needed for a person’s entire life, than birth control pills.

  4. david7134 says:

    dana,
    Toothpaste would be a good thing to pay for as prevention of dental issues is key to prevention of many diseases, especially cardiac. Yet, you will not find that in our great nationalized health care.

  5. Zachriel says:

    Dana: birth control pills run from $0 to $50 a month, nowhere close to $150.

    $50 a month is still significant for a single mother trying to prevent future pregnancy.

  6. John says:

    Boys know best about all things birth control
    Dana you seem to be advocating for BIG GOVERNMRNT to give us all free toothpaste I think that would be a great idea thanks for sharing it with us
    Please write all your elected officials this could drive down
    Total dental costs
    This program would take a medication that was being paid for by insurance and make the women pay out of pocket for it
    I don’t see that happening with Viagra men like to have that covered by insurance

  7. Dana says:

    Zachriel wrote:

    $50 a month is still significant for a single mother trying to prevent future pregnancy.

    You’ll note that there is a low end on the scale Planned Parenthood gave, I would hope. The top end is going to be for the name brand, highly-advertised brands, or for special formulations for women who have difficulties with standard pills.

    But, quite frankly, I don’t care if $50 a month is expensive; it all has to get paid for anyway, and that means that insurers will have to write the anticipated costs into their premiums; both the single mothers who pay for insurance, and people like me, whose wife is 55 years old and cannot become pregnant anymore, are having to pay for it.

    Plus, since Obysmalcare is subsidized for the less productive people, we wind up paying a bit more in our taxes as well.

    And, on top of all that, Obumblecare is making birth control pills more expensive! Previously, a patient would go to the pharmacy, and pay cash for her pills. Now, she gets ’em for free, which means that she doesn’t particularly care about opting for a less expensive generic brand. On top of that, the pharmacy mush now bill her insurer for the pills, and the insurance company must meet the overhead costs of verifying that the patient is eligible and making the payments. The pharmacy, which used to get paid for the pills when they were sold, now has to wait X number of days before it is reimbursed by the insurance company. All of that makes the pills more expensive.

  8. Dana says:

    John sarcastically wrote:

    Boys know best about all things birth control

    Yes, actually, we do, because no woman gets knocked up without our assistance!

    Dana you seem to be advocating for BIG GOVERNMRNT to give us all free toothpaste I think that would be a great idea thanks for sharing it with us

    No, I’m not advocating that at all; I’m advocating that people wanting contraception coverage should be able to buy it, voluntarily, without requiring the rest of us to pay for it. And I am wholly opposed to the government controlling health care coverage, or providing it for people who can’t buy it themselves.

    It is a smart thing to have health insurance, but it should not be the government’s responsibility to see that you have it.

  9. $50 a month is still significant for a single mother trying to prevent future pregnancy.

    Perhaps, but there is an easy answer for that. Can you guess what it is?

  10. Zachriel says:

    Dana: I don’t care if $50 a month is expensive; it all has to get paid for anyway, and that means that insurers will have to write the anticipated costs into their premiums

    You will find strong liberal support for over-the-counter birth control if the cost is included in health insurance, as it is when prescribed by a physician. The Republican proposal doesn’t have that provision.

  11. gitarcarver says:

    You will find strong liberal support for over-the-counter birth control if the cost is included in health insurance, as it is when prescribed by a physician.

    Because liberals love to reach into the pockets of people and take money for their projects. If people want to have birth control added to their health insurance, that is a decision they should make. Why should couples that are no longer of the child bearing age have to pay for a service they will not use?

  12. Dana says:

    Zachriel reveals the left’s agenda:

    Dana: I don’t care if $50 a month is expensive; it all has to get paid for anyway, and that means that insurers will have to write the anticipated costs into their premiums

    You will find strong liberal support for over-the-counter birth control if the cost is included in health insurance, as it is when prescribed by a physician. The Republican proposal doesn’t have that provision.

    Well, of course that’s what y’all want. Now we’d increase the costs for an OTC medication because, like the prescription version, it would come with overhead.

    But the agenda is revealed: if insurance has to pay for it, then the insurance companies, and the government, will now have records of who uses what contraception.

    Look back to the mandate that all medical records be put into electronic form that was part of the stimulus bill: we were assured, assured! that they’d remain private, and that only doctors could get them; this was to help physicians with your treatment, don’t you know? But the government can’t keep anything secret; the Infernal Revenue Service just got hacked.

    The bill required that the medical records be kept in a form which includes a body mass index calculation, but your physician can see if you are obese just by looking. The real reason — that no one will ever tell you — is to make those records more easily searchable. Encouraging physicians to ask patients, especially children, if there are any firearms in the house is just another way to collect, and mine, data.

  13. Zachriel says:

    gitarcarver: Because liberals love to reach into the pockets of people and take money for their projects.

    The original post concerned objections to the Republican plan to make birth control available over the counter. Birth control is currently paid for by insurance, but wouldn’t under the Republican plan. That’s why most liberals are against the Republican plan — not because they are against making birth control more readily available.

    gitarcarver: Why should couples that are no longer of the child bearing age have to pay for a service they will not use?

    The same reason why young people have to pay for geriatric care. The purpose of insurance is to distribute the risk.

  14. Dana says:

    Zachriel wrote:

    The original post concerned objections to the Republican plan to make birth control available over the counter. Birth control is currently paid for by insurance, but wouldn’t under the Republican plan. That’s why most liberals are against the Republican plan — not because they are against making birth control more readily available.

    Having birth control paid for by insurance companies makes it more expensive for everybody. If Target could sell prescription BC pills for $9.00 a month, they could sell the same pills, if they were non-prescripion, for less, because the overhead costs of the pharmacist would be reduced.

    What you want would increase costs, by increasing overhead, and continually creating a record of who is — and is not — buying oral contraceptives. The women taking the pills wouldn’t save any money, because their insurance payments would have to include the contraceptive coverage; it just hides the additional cost a bit.

    The costs for contraception are so low in this country that the argument that having insurance required to pay for it makes it more available is laughable. I doubt that you could find a single county in the country where what Archie Bunker once referred to as birth patrol pills are not available.

  15. Zachriel says:

    Dana: Having birth control paid for by insurance companies makes it more expensive for everybody.

    Possibly, but that doesn’t salvage the original claim that liberals objected to selling contraception over the counter.

    Dana: The women taking the pills wouldn’t save any money, because their insurance payments would have to include the contraceptive coverage; it just hides the additional cost a bit.

    The cost is included in the premium, but for poor women, that premium is subsidized.

    Dana: The costs for contraception are so low in this country that the argument that having insurance required to pay for it makes it more available is laughable.

    “In a scenario assuming no out-of-pocket costs for the over-the counter pill, an additional 11–21% of low-income women will use the pill, resulting in a 20–36% decrease in the number of women using no method or a method less effective than the pill, and a 7–25% decrease in the number of unintended pregnancies, depending on the level of use and any effect on contraceptive failure rates.”

    See Foster et al., Potential public sector cost-savings from over-the-counter access to oral contraceptives, Contraception 2015.

    Dana: I doubt that you could find a single county in the country where what Archie Bunker once referred to as birth patrol pills are not available.

    You do realize it was liberals working through the courts to make that happen? See Griswold v. Connecticut 1965.

  16. What??? says:

    Prove it. No one pays $150/month for oral contraceptives. Can ANYONE on the Left EVER tell the truth?

  17. Zachriel says:

    Comment by What???: No one pays $150/month for oral contraceptives.

    We accepted the figure of $50 per month arguendo. It’s still a significant payment for a poor person.

    $37 to $162: The Strange World of Birth Control Pill Prices
    http://blog.credit.com/2013/08/strange-world-birth-control-pill-prices/

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