SB23-189 works to make reproductive health care more accessible and affordable
DENVER, CO – The House Health & Insurance Committee today passed legislation to make reproductive health care, including abortion, more equitable and accessible. SB23-189 is part of the Safe Access to Protected Health Care legislative package and works to increase insurance coverage and close accessibility gaps for reproductive health care.
“The last thing on anyone’s mind when receiving life-saving care, including an abortion, should be – can I afford this? However, financial barriers keep that question top of mind for too many Coloradans,” said Rep. Dafna Michaelson Jenet, D-Commerce City. “This bill will increase access to reproductive health care by reducing surprise billing and filling gaps in insurance coverage. I was privileged enough to pay for my own abortion out-of-pocket, but you shouldn’t have to be in my shoes to receive the health care you need. Our bill ensures that all Coloradans, regardless of income level or zip code, are supported in accessing reproductive health care and STI treatments.”
“Inequity in health care access is a systemic problem, which is why we’re committed to breaking down barriers and making it possible for all Coloradans to receive the reproductive health care they need,” said Rep. Lorena Garcia, D-Unincorporated Adams County. “Our bill makes accessing reproductive health care, including abortion and STI treatment, more equitable and affordable. To achieve reproductive freedom for all, we need to prioritize health care access for underserved communities and communities of color, and uproot the barriers that hold people back from receiving the care they need.”
Increasing Access To Reproductive Health Care: SB23-189 passed committee by a vote of 8 to 3. This bill would limit surprise medical billing and remove patient cost sharing for reproductive health care services and treatment, including but not limited to sterilization, sexually transmitted infections (STI) and abortion care.
This bill expands access to contraception and related information for all Coloradans, specifically for minors, by modernizing a 1971 law currently in place and aligning it with Colorado’s Public Health code. Additionally, this bill expands family-planning related services and treatment for routine visits. Through the Family Planning Access Collaborative created in the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), the department would work to examine issues related to access to family planning services, gaps in coverage, and confidentiality of services.
SB23-189 additiontally prioritizes access to life-saving HIV medication by including coverage for the treatment and prevention of HIV by health benefit plans.