Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston



Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Who Supports Contraception Converage Under the ACA?



The Catholic Church is angry and instructed its pastors to politicize its pulpits by declaiming against the Obama administration's contraception coverage.  But the facts are that a majority of Catholics SUPPORT access to contraception under the ACA, and they do so by a very comfortable margin.  The only segment of the population against the coverage are Evangelicals.

Here are the latest figures and facts:

From the National Opinion Survey, Catholics For Choice [linked to above the chart].

1. Reducing health care costs is a top priority for Catholic voters.

Health care is among the top priorities for Catholic voters, second only to improving the economy (56% saying highest priority)and closely followed by resolving the war in Afghanistan (33%). Reducing costs is Catholics’ top health care priority for Obama (37% highest priority), followed by ensuring that everyone in the country is covered by health insurance (28%).  Social justice is an important concept for Catholic voters in the health care reform debate. Nearly three-quarters (73%) believe that reforming health care—“providing health care for people who need it”—is important because it is a matter of “social justice.”

Catholics use contraception

Ninety-eight percent of sexually experienced Catholic women have used a contraceptive method other than natural family planning, as compared to 99 percent of the general population.

Only two percent of Catholic women, including those who attend church once a month or more, rely on natural family planning.

Sixty-nine percent of US Catholic women rely on highly effective contraceptive methods like sterilization (32 percent, including 24 percent using female sterilization), the pill or another hormonal method (31 percent) or an IUD (five percent).

Catholics support contraceptive coverage
More than six in 10 (63 percent) Catholic voters surveyed in 2009 supported health insurance coverage—whether it is private or government insurance—for contraception.
A 2010 poll showed that Catholic women voters are more likely to support health plan coverage for birth control—77 percent versus 71 percent for the population at large.

Eighty-five percent of Catholics believe in extending birth control coverage to those who want it but cannot afford it—this is more than the 82 percent of the general population.

"President Obama listened to all of the women and men who called, e-mailed and wrote to the White House to express their support for family planning decisions staying in the hands of women. In so doing, he remained true to the original vision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and refused to bend the knee to intense lobbying from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Catholic healthcare industry and other special interests who wanted him to expand a refusal clause that would have denied millions of women access to affordable family planning.

The president of Catholics for Choice, Jon O’Brien, said, “The bishops pulled out all the stops in their campaign against women’s access to contraception. The Obama administration stood with those who support religious liberty and believe in giving women the freedom of conscience to make their own reproductive health decisions.

“While the refusal clause that is contained in the legislation is still too expansive, denying many women, as it does, affordable access to contraception, we are relieved by this announcement. Catholics for Choice and our colleagues in the reproductive rights movement expended a huge amount of energy and resources mobilizing the public to take action on this pivotal issue. In the final analysis, this was a victory for common sense and scientific advice in the interests of the common good."




"The largest Catholic university in the nation has admitted to providing contraception coverage as part of its health care benefit package, further undermining the GOP’s claims that Obama’s regulation requiring insurers and employers to offer reproductive health benefits represents and “unprecedented” war against religion. The rule — which exempts houses of worship and nonprofits that primarily employ and serve people of faith from providing contraception coverage — mirrors existing requirements in six states."

Many Catholic Universities, Hospitals Already Cover Contraception In Their Health Insurance Plans

"...many Catholic colleges have purchased insurance plans that provide contraception benefits:
University of Scranton, for example, appears to specifically cover contraception. The University of San Francisco offers employees two health plans, both of which cover abortion, contraception and sterilization…Also problematic is the Jesuit University of Scranton. One of its health insurance plans, the First Priority HMO, lists a benefit of “contraceptives when used for the purpose of birth control.”

DePaul University in Chicago covers birth control in both its fully insured HMO plan and its self-insured PPO plan and excludes “elective abortion,” said spokesman John Holden, adding that the 1,800 employee-university responded to a complaint from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission several years ago and added artificial contraception as a benefit to its Blue Cross PPO.

Christian Brothers University in Memphis, Tenn., offers employee health insurance via the Tennessee Independent Colleges and Universities Association, a consortium of Christian Bible and other private college and universities. Its plan excludes abortion, but probably covers artificial contraception as a prescription drug, said C. Gregg Conroy, the executive director of the TICUA Benefit Consortium.
Boston College, the six former Caritas Christi Catholic hospitals in Massachusetts, and other Catholic organizations that are located in one of the 28 states that already require employers to provide contraception benefits could have self-insured or stopped offering prescription drug coverage to avoid the mandate — but didn’t do so. Instead, they — like many Catholic hospitals and health care insurers around the country — chose to meet the needs of the overwhelming majority of Catholic women and offer these much needed services."


Joe "Truth 101" Kelly said...

Why aren't the Bishops demanding we atholics not go to Walmart or Walgreens? They sell rubbers and birth ontrol pills.

I said at Swash Zone this is an example of church hierarchy being used as tools by the right. And that's exactly what it is.

Rational Nation USA said...

Or the right bring used as tools of the church(s).

Whatever, I find it amusing...

Shaw Kenawe said...

I think Catholics should listen to the Catholic hierarchy the way the Catholic hierarchy listened to the children and the parents of the children who were molested and raped by their priests.

When you see that 58% of Catholics support the inclusion of the contraception part of the ACA, it shows, once again, that the organization that calls itself the RCC has no idea of what is going on in its own parishes.

Just because a guy in a beanie and lace dress says contraception is evil doesn't make it so.

Catholics all over the world, not just in the US--look at Italy, where the Pope lives--are using their heads and contraception instead of listening to a bunch of old men whose ears were closed while children, mothers, and fathers pleaded for them to investigate the pedophile priest scandals.

Anonymous said...

Imagine that people who stick to their convictions in the face of such negativity.

Shaw Kenawe said...

"Imagine that people who stick to their convictions in the face of such negativity."


And that's what President Obama has done.

Infidel753 said...

This just confirms my impression that most Americans are not nearly as devoutly religious as we're often told. Millions of people self-identify as Catholic or whatever due to inertia -- it's easier to keep an inherited label than deal with the psychological stresses of renouncing it -- but for important decisions, they rely on their own judgment rather than the inane pronouncements of religious "authorities".

Shaw Kenawe said...


A majority of Catholics practice birth control and approve of including contraception coverage in insurance policies covered by Catholic institutions.

The Catholic bishops, again, are hypocrites.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Gail Collins, NYTimes 2/9/2012:

"When I was first married, my mother-in-law sat down at her kitchen table and told me about the day she went to confession and told the priest that she and her husband were using birth control. She had several young children, times were difficult — really, she could have produced a list of reasons longer than your arm.
“You’re no better than a whore on the street,” said the priest.

This was, as I said, a long time ago. It’s just an explanation of why the bishops are not the only Roman Catholics who are touchy about the issue of contraception.

Rational Nation USA said...

Actually the issue really is with the "mandate." It should be the choice of insurers whether they offer coverage and it should be the choice of the businesses who purchase insurance whether or not they purchase and ofter it to employees they cover.

The entire Church, Santorum, et all issue of "infringing on religious liberty" is just cover. Or more accurately stated BS.

Ducky's here said...

Boston College covers contraception with its health insurance. So do area Catholic hospitals (which are NOT administered by the Church but by private companies).

Contraception is a battle that the right will lose every time which is why the wily Obama made this declaration to cover up the fact that he got down on his knees fellating the banksters again.

With all the lame fury over the nothing contraption declaration (its law in many states already) the suckers didn't notice that Obummer screwed them again.

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