Privately Insured Women Increased Use of Long-Acting Reversible Contraception After ACA, Study Finds

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), most private insurance plans have been required to cover all FDA-approved forms of contraception without cost-sharing since the 2013 plan year. An analysis of private insurance claims from 2006-2014 for women ages 13 to 45 found a small but statistically significant increase in insertions of long-acting reversible contraceptive (LARC) devices after the ACA's contraceptive mandate took effect.

State Medicaid Programs’ Coverage for Long-Acting Reversible Contraception is Uneven, Study Finds

State Medicaid programs must cover family planning services, but wide variation in specific policies around payment and training means low-income women's access to some of the most effective methods of contraception can vary by state. Researchers who analyzed nine states' Medicaid policies around long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARC) found most did not explicitly cover all key elements of quality contraceptive care.

Providing Legal Services in Clinical Settings Can Help Promote Health Equity, According to New Research in Health Affairs

As health care organizations seek to address unmet social needs of their patients to improve health care quality, equity, and health outcomes, medical-legal partnership offers a practical intervention to address social and environmental circumstances of patients that have a remedy in civil law. More than 300 health care organizations nationwide have adopted medical-legal partnerships in a wide variety of settings, including general hospitals and health systems, children’s hospitals, health centers, veteran’s health clinics, tribal health organizations, and others.

To Counter Pain and Opioid Use in Women, Commentary Recommends a Physical Activity Research Agenda

In a new commentary in the journal Women’s Health Issues, a group of researchers notes that as many as one-third of U.S. and Canadian women suffer from chronic pain, and commonly prescribed opioid treatments come with substantial risks. National health agencies recommend physical activity as a nonpharmacologic pain management strategy, but health professionals don’t yet have enough information about the type and intensity of exercise to recommend for specific groups of patients, or how best to make physical activity accessible to those who could use it to manage chronic pain.

Investigating How States’ Vaccination Exemption Laws Affect Vaccination Rates

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Childhood vaccines play a major role in minimizing the incidence of vaccine-preventable disease. While all states accommodate medical vaccine exemptions, certain states also allow for waivers on the basis of religious or philosophical objections. Certain vaccines have been particularly controversial, with public perceptions linking them to autism and developmental disorders, despite consensus to the contrary in the scientific and medical communities.  This has led some states to add exemptions in recent years, while other states opted to eliminate the exemptions.