State medicaid abortion coverage policies make it hard to have free abortion

Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

By David Liu, PHD

Tuesday July 24, 2012 (foodconsumer.org) -- Abortion sponsored by Medicaid is not as easy as ever after states implemented new Medicaid abortion coverage policies, according to a new study published June 28, 2012 in Health Services Research.

The finding came after A. Dennis and K. Blanchard of Ibis Reproductive Health in Cambridge, MA analysed data from 70 abortion-providing facilities in 15 states from  2007 through 2010.

The researchers found two in 15 states reimbursed the expenses that incurred for an abortion in 97 percent of qualifying cases whereas the remaining 13 states only paid for abortion expenses in 36 percent of qualifying cases.

In the generous states, "success receiving reimbursement was attributed to streamlined electronic billing procedures, timely claims processing, and responsive Medicaid staff," the authors wrote. 

The authors said "abortion service providers reported difficulties obtaining reimbursement due to unclear rejections of qualifying claims, complex billing procedures, lack of knowledgeable Medicaid staff with whom billing problems could be discussed, and low and slow reimbursement rates.

In the U.S., nearly 50% of pregnancies among American women are unintended, and about 22% of the total pregnancies are terminated by induced abortion. 

In 2008, 1.21 million abortions were performed compared to 1.31 million in 2000. However, between 2005 and 2008, the decline in abortions discountinued.   From 1973 through 2008, about 50 million abortions were legally performed.

Each year, two percent of women aged 15 to 44 have an abortion. Half have had at least one previous abortion.

At least 50% of American women will experience an unintended pregnancy by age 45, and, at current rates, 10% of all women are expected to have an abortion by age 20, 25% by age 30 and 30% by age 45.

Each year, two percent of women aged 15–44 have an abortion. Half have had at least one previous abortion.

At least half of American women will experience an unintended pregnancy by age 45, and, at current rates, one in 10 women will have an abortion by age 20, one in four by age 30 and three in 10 by age 45.

(Send your news to foodconsumer.org@gmail.com, Foodconsumer.org is part of the Infoplus.com ™ news and information network)