• New Agency Guidance on Required Contraceptive Coverage Under Group Health Plans
  • May 3, 2012 | Authors: Ashley Gillihan; John R. Hickman; Carolyn E. Smith
  • Law Firms: Alston & Bird LLP - Atlanta Office ; Alston & Bird LLP - Washington Office
  • On August 1, 2011, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), a part of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), issued Guidelines on Women’s Preventive Health (the “HRSA Guidelines”). Under Section 2713 of the Public Health Service Act (PHSA), as added by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and incorporated by reference into ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code, a non-grandfathered group health plan and a health insurance issuer offering group or individual health insurance coverage must provide benefits for, and may not impose cost-sharing with respect to, preventive care and screening provided for under the HRSA Guidelines. The HRSA Guidelines supplement the previously adopted preventive care guidelines and are subject to the same rules regarding cost-sharing. Non-grandfathered plans and issuers generally are required to provide the preventive coverage specified in the HRSA Guidelines beginning with the first plan year (or, in the individual market, the first policy year) that begins on or after August 1, 2012. Thus, for non-grandfathered plans that have a calendar year plan year, the HRSA Guidelines are effective starting with the plan year beginning January 1, 2013.