COMMENTARY

Emergency Contraception After Rape

Judith A. Linden, MD; Jasmine C. Mathews, MD

Disclosures

April 29, 2014

In This Article

EC Access and State/Federal Regulations

Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies are required to cover FDA-approved contraceptive methods, without requiring copays. However, it is not clear whether all plans will cover EC, and many will not cover the over-the-counter formulations, which are the ones most accessible to women.

Some states, including Arkansas and North Carolina, have deliberately exempted EC from their contraceptive coverage mandate, and therefore do not cover women with public insurance. The simultaneous availability of prescription and over-the-counter generic and nongeneric formulations presents opportunities for confusion as to how to get these medications, and which ones will be covered by insurance.

Some states mandate that emergency departments dispense EC to sexual assault victims, whereas others require them to inform patients about the availability to these medications. These regulations are rapidly evolving. An up-to-date summary of state laws regarding EC is available from the Guttmacher Institute.

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