Women’s Health

Does my employer plan have to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives with a prescription?

Ver en Español

Under the ACA, most private health insurance plans must cover at least one form of the 18 FDA-approved contraceptive method categories for women without cost sharing. This means that plans must cover at least one of each of the three different types of oral contraceptives – the combined pill, the progestin-only pill and the continuous use pill – though it is up to an insurer’s discretion using reasonable medical management practices  whether to cover a brand name or generic contraceptive if both are available. Insurers are required to cover other contraceptives if medically necessary and must provide a process for policyholders to request coverage of a contraceptive that is not already covered without cost sharing by the plan. While some contraceptive methods are available over the counter without a prescription, plans typically require a prescription to trigger coverage.

However, if you are enrolled in an employer plan and the employer has a religious or moral objection to contraceptives, your plan might not include contraceptive coverage.

If you are covered by a plan that was in effect on or before March 23, 2010, it may be a “grandfathered plan.” These plans are not required to cover preventive services, or they may require cost sharing. If you are not sure if your plan is grandfathered, check with your employer or your insurance plan. Browse more questions in the Employer-Sponsored Health Coverage section.

While we have made every effort to provide accurate information in these FAQs, people should contact the health insurance Marketplace or Medicaid agency in their state for guidance on their specific circumstances.

KFF Headquarters: 185 Berry St., Suite 2000, San Francisco, CA 94107 | Phone 650-854-9400
Washington Offices and Barbara Jordan Conference Center: 1330 G Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005 | Phone 202-347-5270

www.kff.org | Email Alerts: kff.org/email | facebook.com/KFF | twitter.com/kff

The independent source for health policy research, polling, and news, KFF is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.