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Does my student health plan have to cover contraceptives?

Generally, yes it does, if it is a fully insured plan. A fully insured plan is one that your college or university purchases from a health insurance company. These plans are required to provide, without cost sharing, access to all FDA-approved contraceptive methods, sterilization procedures, patient education and counseling prescribed by a health care provider. Exceptions are made for institutions of higher education that have religious or moral objections to providing contraceptive services. If you attend such a college or university, the college or university has a choice to opt for an accommodation or an exemption.  If the college or university chooses an exemption, then you will not have coverage for contraceptive.  If the college or university chooses an accommodation, you will have contraceptive coverage at no cost directly from the health insurance company.

If your student health plan is a self-insured plan, it might not be required to cover contraceptive services. It’s up to states to regulate self-insured student health plans.  Check with your college or university to find out what type of student health plan they offer, or check with your state insurance regulator to find out what rules apply to your student health coverage.

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.