women's health

Stunner On Birth Control: Trump’s Moral Exemption Is Geared To Just 2 Groups

Oct 17, 2017

Few people were surprised last week when the Trump administration issued a rule to make it easier for some religious employers to opt out of offering no-cost prescription birth control to their female employees under the Affordable Care Act.

Updated 4:52 pm

The Trump administration is rolling back the Obama-era requirement that employer-provided health insurance policies cover birth control methods at no cost to women.

According to senior officials with the Department of Health and Human Services, the goal of the new rule is to allow any company or nonprofit group to exclude the coverage for contraception if it has a religious or moral objection.

In Cambridge, Mass., a woman named Kristin sits down on a stone bench to talk about a common but rarely discussed injury that's starting to grow along with the opioid epidemic: rape.

Court Helps Kids By Healing Parents’ Addictions

Aug 17, 2016
Robert Durell for California Healthline

At 10 a.m. on a recent Wednesday, a line of parents pushing strollers filed into a conference room at the Sacramento County Courthouse. They sat at rows of narrow plastic tables, shushing their babies and gazing up at a man in a black robe.

 


Supreme Court Strikes Down Key Restrictions In Texas Anti-Abortion Law

Jun 27, 2016
In a 5-3 ruling, the Supreme Court ruled Monday in favor or Whole Woman's Health in their case against Texas health commissioner John Hellerstedt.
Jordan Uhl via Flickr

The Supreme Court struck down key aspects of a Texas abortion law Monday, casting doubt on similar laws in nearly two dozen states.

At issue in the court’s decision were two specific provisions of a sweeping law to restrict abortions passed by the Texas legislature in 2013. The provisions before the court required doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital no more than 30 miles from the abortion clinic and required abortion clinics to meet the same health and safety standards as “ambulatory surgical centers” that perform much more complicated procedures.

New York Aims To Become The Next State To Toss The Tampon Tax

May 18, 2016

Feminine products are having a moment. With some calling for a red wave to take the taboo out of menstruation, politicians across the country are trying to make tampons and sanitary pads as affordable and accessible as possible.

Five states have eliminated sales taxes on pads and tampons: New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Maryland and Minnesota. In New York, a bill awaits the governor's signature, and other efforts to improve access to sanitary products are underway.

Brandy Beck considers herself lucky. As a breast-feeding mom, the Frontier Airlines pilot has experienced severe breast pain, engorged breasts, clogged ducts, decreased milk supply, three interruptions while pumping at work, and pumping in airport and airplane bathrooms.

Pregnancy Fairness Act Protects Illinois Women, But Justice Moves Slowly

Apr 19, 2016
FRANK DE KLEINE via FLICKR

Bene’t Holmes was four months pregnant when she had a miscarriage at work. It happened the day after her manager at a Chicago Walmart denied her request for lighter duties. According to her account, a doctor had told the then-25 year-old that she should no longer lift 50-pound boxes as her job demanded. But she needed the job.

Holmes told her story in a July 2014 blog post for the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union. A month after she wrote that post, the Illinois General Assembly approved a measure that requires all employers provide reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers or those who have childbirth-related conditions. The law came too late to protect women like Holmes, but its backers hope it will prevent other women from facing the same wrenching choice: Put your unborn child at risk or lose your job?

As Birthing Centers Increase In Popularity, Kansas Midwives Push For Legal Independence

Mar 16, 2016
Kendra Wyatt, left, of the New Birth Center in Kansas City, Kansas, and expectant mother Sarah Lockridge inspect a 'birthing sling' in the room that Sarah is hoping to use when she delivers h
Jim McLean / Heartland Health Monitor

The number of birth center deliveries – while still small compared to hospitals – has jumped more than 50 percent since 2007. And recent research has documented some associated health benefits.

A study soon to be published in the journal Women’s Health Issues says there are fewer pre-term births and low birthweight babies in states where midwives – working in birth centers and hospitals – do more deliveries. There are also fewer cesarean births.

States Start to Let Pharmacists Prescribe Birth Control Pills

Feb 18, 2016
Rebecca Smith / KBIA

Since January, Charley McGrady has been doling out hormonal contraceptive pills and patches to women who come to her Eugene, Oregon, pharmacy without a doctor’s prescription for birth control.

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