Like the rest of the country, ob/gyns are divided about a federal mandate for contraception coverage. In our recent poll, 36% of ob/gyns said that religious institutions should be exempted from a requirement to provide free contraception as part of their insurance package, while 64% said that free contraception should be required, either through the employer or via other means. The results mirror the opinion of the general population: In a survey by the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, 63% of American supported the federal requirement that private health insurance plans cover birth control.
While I would have expected some ob/gyns to oppose the mandate, I’m surprised that it’s not a significantly smaller percentage relative to the general population. How would you counsel a sexually active patient unable to afford birth control and whose insurance won’t pay for it?