Funding Abortion

Legislation Prohibiting Taxpayer-Funded Abortions Through Insurance Exchanges Goes to Senate

HARRISBURG – By a vote of 144-53, legislation prohibiting abortion coverage in qualified plans offered through a health insurance exchange was approved by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives today, Majority Leader Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny County) announced.

“Consistent with a majority of Pennsylvanians, the House acted today to ensure no tax dollars are used for elective abortions,” Turzai said. “House Bill 818 extends current state law, nothing more or less, to the health care exchanges in Pennsylvania.”

 

House Bill 818 would explicitly prohibit health insurers participating in any taxpayer-subsidized state health insurance exchanges – an insurance system created under the new federal health care law through the use of taxpayer dollars and currently slated to be operational by 2014 – from providing coverage for elective abortions. Seventeen other states have already opted out of offering this coverage.

Allowable exceptions under House Bill 818 are the life of the mother, rape or incest. The bill regulates the use of public funds for abortion services to maintain consistency between federal law and state law.  It does not prohibit an individual from purchasing abortion coverage on a separate premium outside the health insurance exchange.

 

“Regulating the use of public funds for abortion services to maintain consistency between federal law and state law is part of being the stewards of Pennsylvania’s tax dollars,” Turzai said.

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