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Why should employers provide free birth control?


StringJunky
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Trump rolls back access to free birth control

Donald Trump's government has issued a ruling that allows employers to opt out of providing free birth control to millions of Americans.
The rule allows employers and insurers to decline to provide birth control if doing so violates their "religious beliefs" or "moral convictions".
Fifty-five million women benefited from the Obama-era rule, which made companies provide free birth control.

As a candidate, Mr Trump had pledged to eliminate that requirement.

It had been a key feature of so-called Obamacare - President Obama's efforts to overhaul the US healthcare system.

It included a provision that permitted religious institutions to forego birth control coverage for their employees.

But the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) said on Friday it was important to expand which organisations can opt out and deny free contraceptive coverage.

"We should have space for organisations to live out their religious ideas and not face discrimination because of their religious ideas," said one HHS official, who did not wish to be named.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-41528526

Is it not the role of government to provide such services? Why is the onus on employers in the US? I find this bizarre. :) 

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Many employers provide healthcare as part of their compensation to employees. The US government does not, for the general population. We don't have national healthcare.

Providing birth control means less expense for pregnancies, and birth control drugs are used for other health-related issues. The smokescreen is in casting this in terms of "religious ideas". Employers do not get to tell their employees how to spend their paycheck, and the first amendment defends the right to have beliefs — not act on them.  You can't sacrifice a virgin to the volcano and mark it off as allowed, just because it's a religious belief. A boss might have the belief that drinking is a sin, but s/he can't forbid you to spend your paycheck on alcohol.

This is just punishing women because some don't like the idea that they have sex. 

Another hypocrisy here is that healthcare covers boner pills. It's OK for men to have sex, but not women. 

 

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8 minutes ago, swansont said:

Many employers provide healthcare as part of their compensation to employees. The US government does not, for the general population. We don't have national healthcare.

Providing birth control means less expense for pregnancies, and birth control drugs are used for other health-related issues. The smokescreen is in casting this in terms of "religious ideas". Employers do not get to tell their employees how to spend their paycheck, and the first amendment defends the right to have beliefs — not act on them.  You can't sacrifice a virgin to the volcano and mark it off as allowed, just because it's a religious belief. A boss might have the belief that drinking is a sin, but s/he can't forbid you to spend your paycheck on alcohol.

This is just punishing women because some don't like the idea that they have sex. 

Another hypocrisy here is that healthcare covers boner pills. It's OK for men to have sex, but not women. 

 

I got the impression from the article that employers are compelled and yet you word it in a way that suggests not. Is there a binding directive to provide such services?

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3 minutes ago, iNow said:

Birth control is covered as part of healthcare. Primary way to receive healthcare is through employers. Better question is why are employers involved in providing healthcare (hint: it was implemented during WWII to attract workers to factories).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOmp3Nz2ZbA

This is a bigger subject than I intended. :) 

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25 minutes ago, swansont said:

Another hypocrisy here is that healthcare covers boner pills. It's OK for men to have sex, but not women. 

 

I never found that to be hypocritical. Boner pills address a health defect, no different than getting blood pressure pills.

I find the lack of birth control to be asinine because of the refusal to acknowledge a gender-based health care need.

 

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1 minute ago, zapatos said:

I never found that to be hypocritical. Boner pills address a health defect, no different than getting blood pressure pills.

I find the lack of birth control to be asinine because of the refusal to acknowledge a gender-based health care need.

 

The hypocrisy is that the former is available and rarely (or at all) being challenged, whereas the latter is.

 

21 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

I got the impression from the article that employers are compelled and yet you word it in a way that suggests not. Is there a binding directive to provide such services?

IIRC the US laws do not force employers to provide benefits or health care as such. However,  under the ACA employers with more than 50 fulltime employees would be subject to fees, if they don't. The provision in OP allows them to op out of services that run against their religious beliefs (though it basically boils down to termination as well as prevention of pregnancy, which can be summarized as idiocy).

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18 minutes ago, zapatos said:

Okay, I guess I'll go first.

Because in general circumstances it is not used to treat a health problem. It is more akin to preventive care, and not all preventive care is covered.

Your turn.

My argument is that a) health plans have to cover preventive care (such as diagnostic tests and vaccines for example) and for good reason  b) the pill is used for many non sex-related reasons including control of menstrual cramps, endometriosis, primary ovarian insufficiency and polycystic ovary syndrome to name a few c) pregnancy is a high health burden .

Considering the medical relevance of one vs the other I maintain it is hypocritical to selectively limit access to one of them

Edited by CharonY
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2 minutes ago, CharonY said:

My argument is that a) health plans have to cover preventive care (such as diagnostic tests and vaccines) and for good reason and b) the pill is used for many non sex-related reasons including ,to control menstrual cramps, endometriosis, primary ovarian insufficience and polycystic ovary syndrome to name a few c) pregnancy is a high health burden 

Considering the medical relevance of one vs the other I maintain it is hypocritical to selectively limit access to one of them

And why would you challenge the coverage of ED medicine?

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10 minutes ago, zapatos said:

And why would you challenge the coverage of ED medicine?

I didn't. I merely pointed out that it is hypocritical to selectively limit one. You seemed to argue that there is good reason to do so. 

 

28 minutes ago, zapatos said:

Because in general circumstances it is not used to treat a health problem. It is more akin to preventive care, and not all preventive care is covered

Which I found puzzling as you started off with:

48 minutes ago, zapatos said:

I find the lack of birth control to be asinine

Which seemed to indicate that you agreed that health care should take care of the needs of both genders. And again, the fact that there is a discussion to limit one aspect only, is hypocritical. Also, not to mention idiotic from a medical point of view as contraception has an enormous impact on women's health.

Edited by CharonY
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Using religious"freedom" as an excuse to implement your religious beliefs on others is not religious "freedom" it is religious "persecution". 

http://www.phillyvoice.com/trevor-noah-drags-pro-life-pennsylvania-rep-who-urged-mistress-to-get-an-abortion/

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The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette this week first reported on a Jan. 25 text message thread that revealed Murphy had urged his mistress, Shannon Edwards to get an abortion. The conversation surfaced on the same day the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that looks to ban abortions after 20 weeks. Murphy is one of the bill's co-sponsors. 

Edwards told Murphy in the text that the congressman had "zero issue posting your pro-life stance all over the place when you had no issue asking me to abort our unborn child just last week when we thought that was one of the options" the paper reported.

It would be funny if this attitude of do as I say not as a do wasn't so serious and used to persecute people. I have little doubt there are people who oppose abortion, I do, but taking steps to force my views on others is quite unconstitutional. It's a backdoor method for people to persecute others. Not being allowed to persecute others over religion is not an infringement on religious freedom. 

It makes very little business sense to not provide birth control if you are providing health insurance to your employees. 

This unholy union of religion and politics called the republican party is IMHO unconstitutional. 

The idea of religious freedom trumping reality is one of the major problems in our society today. From parents letting their children die because they don't believe in medical care to the slimy con artists who get fabulously wealthy off the hopes and fears of the poor this attitude of "religious freedom" has been distorted out of shape. This distortion is not accidental,  it is actually a real political power play being played out by christian dominionists . Their goals and methods have been known for decades but no one really thought this tactic would work. But religion, basically being the dishonest quest for power over others, has used this strategy to garner support from normally "reasonable" theists due to the general idea of "if it's god's work it has to be good" Few mainstream christians are willing to speak out against this perversion of our laws for fear of persecution themselves and the biblical idea of judge not lest ye be judged. 

It a very effective and powerful scam mostly because questioning the christian religion is difficult for other christians, when a christian leader is found out to be committing some crime the idea of forgiveness reigns over justice in many christian communities. I personally know of christian leaders, locally, who have been caught doing everything from child molestation to theft of church money and the congregations made it almost impossible to prosecute these crimes. 

The Problem these people have with birth control is that is allows sexual congress with no consequences, it is especially loathsome for women to be sexually active and not suffer the consequences of pregnancy and the biblically decreed pain and suffering of sexual activity. 

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36 minutes ago, CharonY said:

I didn't. I merely pointed out that it is hypocritical to selectively limit one. You seemed to argue that there is good reason to do so. 

 

No, what I said was that it was not hypocritical to support one and not the other, because they are dissimilar. One address a health problem, one is preventive care. For it to be hypocritical, they would have to be similar.

If you support preventive care for men but not women, that is hypocritical. If you support addressing health problems for men but not women, that is hypocritical. If you support testicle cancer screening for men but not breast cancer screening for women, that is hypocritical.

But there is no direct comparison between ED health problems and preventive birth control other than that both are used during coitus. You may as well link a torn achilles tendon (fixing a problem) in women and high quality sneakers (preventive health care) for men since both are used when you go to the gym.

 

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Which seemed to indicate that you agreed that health care should take care of the needs of both genders.

I do. What I don't like is illogical comparisons. I have no objections to someone else who doesn't want to cover all preventive (or all problem resolution) care as long as they are consistent between genders.

 

Edited by zapatos
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There are a large number of people who want to increase the already heavy advantage their money gives them, and if they are "job-givers" they'd be able to pocket the funds they normally have to match on employee health insurance. So the motive with them appears to be profit.

There are a large number of people who want to be judges of morality, and dictate who is worthy in society, and who is not. The motive with these folks seems to be control. 

This issue straddles both groups pretty nicely. Both can pretend is all about fairness, while doing unfair things to other people.

 

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@zapatos, I think your distinction is quite arbitrary. Based on surveys by the NFSG especially among teens the pill is used for non-pregnancy related functions. But even if we ignore it, health policy should not be about nitpicking definitions, but about health outcomes. To me it is limiting one important aspect of women's health but imposing no similar restrictions on male's health (and neither restriction should exist).

Vaccines are preventative, and there is no discussion regarding whether they should be covered. More to the point, the reason why it is excluded is not because it is preventative, but for religious motives. Which in turn basically means that control of specifically the female body should be subject religious restrictions, whereas the male body is apparently  not. 

Edited by CharonY
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1 hour ago, zapatos said:

Okay, I guess I'll go first.

Because in general circumstances it is not used to treat a health problem. It is more akin to preventive care, and not all preventive care is covered.

Your turn.

Preventative care is the best (and often cheapest) care to provide.

It's the last thing for which you should cut funding.

 

Fundamentally re. "Why should employers provide free birth control?"

Because it's cheaper than providing maternity cover, not just for them, but for everybody

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A boner is not required to function in day to day life. Besides being a slight inconvenience in engaging in activities from which the outcome might be slightly more than an inconvenience, I do not see why not getting it up should be addressed at all.

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13 minutes ago, CharonY said:

@zapatos, I think your distinction is quite arbitrary. Based on surveys by the NFSG especially among teens the pill is used for non-pregnancy related functions. But even if we ignore it, health policy should not be about nitpicking definitions, but about health outcomes. To me it is limiting one important aspect of women's health but imposing no similar restrictions on male's health (and neither restriction should exist).

Vaccines are preventative, and there is no discussion regarding whether they should be covered. More to the point, the reason why it is excluded is not because it is preventative, but for religious motives. Which in turn basically means that control of specifically the female body should be subject religious restrictions, whereas the male body is apparently  not. 

It is not necessary to argue with me that birth control should be covered. I agree it should be and said so in my first post.

The objection to supplying birth control has to do with religious concerns regarding the artificial prevention of pregnancy, and not for uses for non-pregnancy related functions, which I also agree is stupid, so we don't need to go down that road either.

The only thing I questioned was tying ED issues with preventive care. I'm unsure why I can't make that clear.

So let's reverse the view tying ED medicine and birth control (as used for preventing birth). 

If someone argued that we should drop annual preventive checkups for women, then would you agree that logically it would be reasonable (no matter how stupid) to drop annual preventive checkups for men?

Now, if someone argued that we should drop birth control for women, then would you agree that logically it would be reasonable (no matter how stupid) to drop coverage for erectile dysfunction in men?

If you answered 'yes' to both, I'll quit arguing as we'll never see eye to eye.

For me, the answer to the first question is 'yes', but the answer to the second is 'no', because they are not the same thing. For question two, I think the reasonable (although stupid) thing to do would be to drop a preventive health care service that applies only to men, rather than some random problem-solving treatment just because it has to do with a guy's dick.

1 hour ago, Fuzzwood said:

A boner is not required to function in day to day life. 

Maybe not for you, but for men and women who have sex in their day to day life, or even to perpetuate humanity, it is an integral participant.

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Birth control is not preventive because it prevents no health defect.  Fertility is the natural healthy state for human beings.  If you lack natural fertility then you have a medical defect which should be covered by your health care. This would not include in vitro fertilization, surrogate mothers, sperm banks, or egg donation since these are not natural ways of reproducing. 

hypocrisy in birth control coverage would be to pay for birth control pills, IUDs, etc, for women but not pay for condoms for men.  

By the way I have no problem with birth control.  Why I should have to pay for birth control for others is beyond me.  

 

Edited by waitforufo
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36 minutes ago, waitforufo said:

Birth control is not preventive because it prevents no health defect.  Fertility is the natural healthy state for human beings.  If you lack natural fertility then you have a medical defect which should be covered by your health care. This would not include in vitro fertilization, surrogate mothers, sperm banks, or egg donation since these are not natural ways of reproducing. 

hypocrisy in birth control coverage would be to pay for birth control pills, IUDs, etc, for women but not pay for condoms for men.  

By the way I have no problem with birth control.  Why I should have to pay for birth control for others is beyond me.  

 

 

3 hours ago, CharonY said:

 the pill is used for many non sex-related reasons including control of menstrual cramps, endometriosis, primary ovarian insufficiency and polycystic ovary syndrome to name a few

 

 

CharonY already listed preventitive uses for birth control and you seem to by ignoring them completely. In my opinion the govt or an employer should not stand between a patient and Doctor. Whatever a Doctor, who is responsible for the health of their patient, says their patient needs are is what they are. It should matter what the definition of preventitive care is to waitforufo or Ten oz.

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55 minutes ago, waitforufo said:

Why I should have to pay for birth control for others is beyond me. 

You don't. It's not your money. You don't get to tell anyone how to spend money you've already spent.

Even if you did, wouldn't you rather spend a dollar now than a hundred dollars later into the welfare system supporting an unwanted pregnancy?

Since Obamacare, unwanted pregnancy and abortions are at historic lows. Likewise fewer clandestine abortion clinics and child abandonment cases.

http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-us-abortion-rates-20170117-story.html

Edited by rangerx
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