California new laws for 2024: Cheaper vasectomies and birth control

California new laws for 2024: Cheaper vasectomies and birth control

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exam room doors with patient files near each door in a file holder

Exam rooms at Mountain Valley Health Center in Bieber on July 23, 2019. [Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters]

Family planning will be less expensive for millions of Californians under a new law taking effect Jan. 1.

Women will be able to go to their local pharmacy, pick up over-the-counter birth control and have insurance pay for it — no prescription needed. Meanwhile, more people will be able to access vasectomies with no out-of-pocket costs.

The Contraceptive Equity Act of 2022 authored by former Sen. Connie Leyva, a Democrat from Chino, requires private health insurance plans to cover birth control products, including condoms and spermicide, without a prescription and no co-pays. This portion of the law applies only to women and is allowed only in in-network pharmacies.

Men will have the option of cheaper vasectomies. A vasectomy is a low-risk sterilization procedure that usually takes about 20 minutes. Cost has long been a major determining factor for men seeking the procedure, which can cost up to several hundred dollars, including follow-up visits.

Billing data shows that vasectomies are becoming more popular following the Supreme Court’s 2022 decision that overturned Roe v. Wade, according to national studies.

California’s new law will apply to about 14 million people with commercial insurance regulated by the state. This new law does not apply to people whose health insurance plan is regulated by the federal government.

Californians covered by Medi-Cal, the joint state and federal health insurance program for low-income people, already have access to vasectomies at no cost to them. But under federal rules, they’ll still need a prescription to access over-the-counter birth control.

This fall, the Biden administration announced it is seeking public input regarding easing access for over-the-counter preventive care supplies, including contraceptives.

Reproductive health advocacy groups Essential Access Health, NARAL Pro-Choice California and the National Health Law Program pushed for the new California law. They have been working to expand access to reproductive care since the Supreme Court struck down the constitutional right to an abortion. In 2022, California also passed a law that eliminated out-of-pocket costs for abortions.

Lobbying groups that represent health insurers, include the California Association of Health Plans, lobbied against the law. They argued state mandates increase the cost of coverage for all Californians, as well as to taxpayers.

The California Catholic Conference and the Right to Life League also opposed the law, with the Catholic group seeking clear exceptions for religious employers.

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tru matters
Guest
tru matters
1 month ago

Years ago the wife said “a vasectomy or no sex”
Guess what I chose.

Last edited 1 month ago
Guest
Guest
Guest
1 month ago
Reply to  tru matters

🤣

BudD
Member
Bud
1 month ago
Reply to  tru matters

New girlfriend?

Bug on a Windshield
Guest
Bug on a Windshield
1 month ago
Reply to  tru matters

I got a dose of Valium during mine. I told the doc I didn’t think it was working. He said, “oh you would know if it wasn’t” as I saw my wife wincing and cringing while he crimped and clamped. Later that night, when it wore off, I felt like the receiving end of a mule to the nethers. All good now though. Oh boy howdy is it all good. That’s what she said.

My question is: now that it’s “no out-of-pocket cost”, do I get reimbursed? And does it still cost to fix my dog?

c u 2morrowD
Member
1 month ago
Reply to  tru matters

Ol Stanwood Schmidt.

Guest
Guest
Guest
1 month ago

This is great news! It should always be affordable.

Moshe Doshan
Guest
Moshe Doshan
1 month ago

Contrary to popular belief vasectomies are kind of a significant operation. You might need to take a week off of work and probably 10 days to two weeks if you do manual labor for a living. But well worth it.

Last edited 1 month ago
Big Rick
Guest
Big Rick
1 month ago

To do everything they can to sterilize the population

thetallone
Guest
thetallone
1 month ago
Reply to  Big Rick

Good!

Strate rate
Guest
Strate rate
1 month ago

And let us not forget about the rise too minimum wage. Finally making it affordable to live in California. Plus all illegal people are now covered by free health care. This will take the burden off are emergency rooms and improve the quality of life for every one crossing are boarders. Along with free education for the children we are truly living in the land of opportunity and the greatest state. Thank you Governor and next president. Keep up the good work