Ohio Insurance Coverage for Abortion Ban (HB 351)
This law was last updated on Apr 8, 2019
Prohibition on Insurance Benefits for Abortion Services
HB 351 would prohibit health insuring corporations, sickness and accident insurers, and public employee benefit plans from offering health insurance plans that covers abortion services.
The term “abortion services” includes drugs or devices used to prevent the implantation of a fertilized ovum, but does not include treatment or services related to an ectopic pregnancy. As such, the bill would have permitted the use of state funds to pay for services related to treatment of an ectopic pregnancy.
The bill would not prohibit coverage, or enable an insurer to deny coverage, for the treatment of post-abortion complications.
Use of State Funds
Existing law prohibits the use of state funds for payment or reimbursement of abortion services unless a certification is made and one of three circumstances exists: (1) the woman suffers from a condition that would result in death if an abortion is not performed; (2) the pregnancy was the result of rape and the patient or the patient’s legal guardian certifies that a report was filed with a law enforcement agency, unless the patient is physically unable to comply with the reporting requirement and that fact is certified by the physician; or (3) the pregnancy is the result of incest and the patient or the patient’s legal guardian certifies that a report was filed with a law enforcement agency, unless the patient is physically unable to comply with the reporting requirement and that fact is certified by the physician.
This bill would add an exception: state funds may not be used for payment or reimbursement of abortion services unless a certification and the woman is diagnosed with an ectopic pregnancy.
The bill would also prohibit state funds from being used for the reimbursement of drugs or devices to prevent the implantation of a fertilized ovum.
The bill would expand the prohibition against state funds being used for nontherapeutic abortion coverage in a state employee benefit plan by limiting the definition of “nontherapeutic abortion” to abortions that are performed when the patient has not been diagnosed with an ectopic pregnancy. Existing law defines “nontherapeutic abortion” as an abortion that is performed or induced when the life of the mother would not be endangered if the fetus were carried to term or when the pregnancy of the mother was not the result of rape or incest reported to a law enforcement agency.
No Separate Rider
Existing law authorizes individuals to purchase a rider or supplemental coverage for nontherapeutic abortions, if the covered individual pays a separate premium for it. This bill would have removed that exception. (Most states that ban insurance coverage permit individuals to purchase and pay for a separate abortion rider.)