As Congress marks up the House and Senate health reform proposals, reproductive rights organizations are lobbying in overdrive, responding to a spate of amendments that seek to prevent even private insurers from offering abortion services in the new health insurance exchanges. Here I speak to NARAL: Pro-Choice America president Nancy Keenan about the threats -- and opportunities -- that health reform presents when it comes to women's reproductive care.
NARAL is asking its supporters to write to their Senators in opposition to a specific anti-choice amendment from Sen. Tom Coburn, which would establish an Office of Unborn Children's Health. That seems patently absurd. But other senators and House members are proposing, very seriously, that both private and public health care plans, after health reform, be prevented from covering abortion services.
You haven’t seen reproductive health care be a big topic within the debate until some of the anti-choice members of Congress poised to offer these amendments. They’re wanting to rattle their sabers here. They are the ones that are trying to make this political, versus keeping the divisiveness out of the debate.
Are there specific services women currently have from employer-based health coverage that are under threat right now?
Obviously, many of the private insurers do provide care for reproductive health, including abortion care. And I think that would be under threat if you saw these anti-choice amendments succeed. The potential there is that many, many women could lose the coverage they presently have.
Read the rest of the interview after the jump.
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