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Texas Advanced A Bill To Change How Insurance Covers Abortions

Under Texas' abortion bill women would need to get supplemental insurance if they want most abortions covered.
Posted at 2:31 PM, Aug 13, 2017

Texas' most recent abortion bill is one step away from being signed into law.

The bill changes how insurance covers abortions. If it becomes law, abortion insurance would become an add-on bought separately — like dental or vision insurance — from plans on the Texas state health exchange.

Some worry it could make abortions harder to pay for. Most women who get an abortion don't intend to get pregnant, which means they likely wouldn't look at abortion options when selecting insurance.

Seven states —  Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, Michigan, North Dakota, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania — have similar add-on laws.

But insurers aren't required to offer additional plans if they don't want to, which means it might be difficult for women in Texas to find insurers selling abortion add-ons. And if they can't find the add-on, they'd have to pay for the whole procedure out of pocket.

Proponents say the bill is only meant to make sure those who oppose abortions don't have to subsidize them for other people.

But opponents have criticized the bill because it doesn't make exceptions for rape or incest.

"And I don't think that any of us want to go home and tell our constituents that we passed a law that requires women, or parents, to purchase rape insurance," said state Rep. Chris Turner.

The bill is likely to make it to the governor's desk sometime next week, and he's expected to sign it into law.