COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSAV) – Beginning this month, Healthy Connections Medicaid members will be able to receive an extended supply of contraceptive pills.
The change comes after legislative efforts to improve contraceptive access in South Carolina. Representatives Beth Bernstein and Kirkman Finlay pushed for the change.
Their bill, H.3279, would ensure that Medicaid and private insurance cover a 12-month supply of contraception that can be picked up at one time.
Advocated from the League of Women Voters and Women’s Rights and Empowerment Network assisted in calling for the policy change.
“I appreciate that Director Baker and SCDHHS worked with me and Representative Bernstein on this common-sense policy,” Finlay said. “Consistent use of contraception is the most effective method of preventing pregnancy.”
Bernstein says access to contraceptives does more for women than just effectively prevent pregnancy.
“Access to a 12-months’ supply of contraception at one time can aid in healthier pregnancies and provide cost savings, as well as increasing the opportunities that women have to pursue education, advance their careers, and participate in public life,” Bernstein says. “This change will improve the lives of many in our state and is just one example of the bipartisanship relationship that Representative Finlay and I have in working together on several bills.”
Ann Warner, CEO of the Women’s Rights and Empowerment Network says that allowing people to get a year’s supply of contraceptives at one time “removes some of the biggest logistical and financial barriers to continuous usage of contraceptive.”
Lynn Teague, Vice President for Issues and Action, said the League of Women Voters appreciates South Carolina legislators who worked to bring this change.
For more information on the policy, click here.