Should I use birth control pills, condoms, or an intrauterine device (IUD)? Women choose their contraceptive method based on many factors, such as effectiveness or convenience, but cost has been less of a consideration since the Affordable Care Act. a provision of the law required employers to provide contraceptives to all women in their health plans without charging a copay or coinsurance fee. estimates suggest that more than 55 million women had access to contraception without copays due to the mandate.
In the future, the price of birth control may be more important. on Oct. On January 6, President Donald Trump revoked that coverage and issued a new rule that provides exemptions for any employer, regardless of industry, who objects to offering contraceptive coverage because of personal religious beliefs or moral convictions.
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Experts don’t yet know what effect the new rule will ultimately have on women’s ability to access birth control. But some worry that the IUD, one of the most effective and low-maintenance types of birth control, could become prohibitively expensive. Without insurance, it’s one of the most expensive methods up front, costing around $900. And while an IUD may be a better financial investment over time, since women can use the device for several years, such a high initial price is out of reach for many women.
Healthcare analytics company Amino analyzed billions of health insurance claims from 2014 through mid-2017 to understand how much an IUD could cost women if their insurance no longer covered it. They looked at the mirena and skyla iud, which use the hormone progestin, and the paragard iud, a non-hormonal copper-releasing device.
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On average, an IUD could cost about $1,000 out of pocket nationwide, the group reported. Below is an interactive map using amino data of what the typical cost of an IUD might be in each state. (Estimated prices are for the full cost of an IUD, including the insertion procedure.)
As the data shows, the lowest estimated cost is about $800. “[An IUD] is not cheap, and the average price is well beyond the reach of many women,” says sohan murthy, data scientist at amino.
Compared to the condom, which has a typical failure rate of 18%, or the birth control pill, which has a failure rate of 9%, the IUD has a failure rate of 0.8% or less. IUDs also require little or no maintenance for years, and hormone-free versions are available. Once IUDs became more affordable under the ACA, public health groups across the country launched public awareness campaigns to encourage more women to consider using long-acting reversible contraceptives like IUDs.
The method is becoming more and more popular. about 6% of women in the us uu. had tried the method in 2002, but it grew to 15% in 2011-2015. Studies have also shown that when women have access to all forms of birth control without financial barriers, they are more likely to choose the type that is most effective. a long-term study based on st. Louis called the Contraceptive Choice Project enrolled nearly 10,000 women and found that when women were counseled about all contraceptive methods, 75% chose a long-acting reversible method, such as the IUD.
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Even before the new rule was announced, many women sought out IUD consultations with providers, possibly in anticipation of changes in birth control insurance coverage. A January report found that the number of women who visited their doctor to discuss birth control rose nearly 19% after Donald Trump was elected president.
data are from amino. The cost per state is determined by taking the median cost of the three types of IUDs in each state.
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