House Majority Whip Kazarian introduces Equality in Abortion Coverage Act
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — House Majority Whip Katherine Kazarian introduced the “Equality in Abortion Coverage Act” Thursday.
The legislation would ensure that people on Medicaid and state health insurance plans would have coverage for abortion procedures.
“While I am grateful that Rhode Island has codified Roe V. Wade into state law, access to reproductive health is still not equal in our state,” said Kazarian. “Unless an individual is able to pay the costs out of pocket or is on private insurance, these essential healthcare services are still out of reach for too many Rhode Islanders.”
The “Equality in Abortion Coverage Act” would eliminate all bans on abortion coverage through the state, Kazarian continued.
“Today, state laws prohibit nearly 1 in 3 Rhode Islanders — people enrolled in Medicaid and state employees — from using their health insurance to cover abortion,” said Nicole Jellinek, Chair of the Rhode Island Coalition for Reproductive Freedom.
Jellinek said the coalition believes that medical decisions should be private between a person and their health care provider.
“Everyone in our state deserves to make healthcare decisions that are best for them and without political interference.” Jellinek stated.
If the bill is passed, Rhode Island will become the 17th state whose Medicaid programs will cover abortion.