The Affordable Care Act, which Marla Ahlgrimm explains was enacted under Pres. Barack Obama, made access to healthcare easier for millions of Americans. The open Healthcare Marketplace, as well as company-sponsored insurance coverage, now provide coverage for a number of essential health benefits. These include:
1. Ambulatory patient services. Marla Ahlgrimm defines ambulatory patient services as more intense outpatient care, such as a minor surgery, that does not require hospitalization.
3. Maternity and newborn care. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, pregnancy is also included along with birth-control and breastfeeding coverage.
4. Behavioral, mental, and substance abuse disorder services including psychotherapy and counseling.
5. Habilitative and rehabilitative services to recover physical and mental skills lost due to chronic conditions or injury.
6. Laboratory services
7. Oral and vision care for pediatric enrollees.
Marla Ahlgrimm notes that some states require insurance providers to cover additional services not required through the general marketplace.
Preventative care benefits specific to women
Women of all ages are entitled by the Affordable Care Act to a number of female-specific health services. These include but are not limited to:
- Routine anemia screening.
- Breastfeeding support and counseling. Marla Ahlgrimm adds that this includes access to breastfeeding supplies and training from a skilled and licensed provider for all pregnant and nursing mothers.
- Folic acid supplements for women who are planning to become pregnant.
- Gestational diabetes screening between the 24th and 28th week of pregnancy. Screening is also available at different times throughout the pregnancy for women who are at higher risk of developing the condition.
- STD screenings.
- Hepatitis B screening during a woman’s initial prenatal visit.
- UTI screening.
Marla Ahlgrimm adds that women are additionally covered for other preventative services to check for breast cancer and sexually transmitted diseases along with screening and counseling for domestic interpersonal violence.