Roe vs. Wade - Carrier Responses

7/4/2022
California Colorado Texas

As of June 24, 2022, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, thereby eliminating the federal standard governing the right to abortion. As a result, many states across the nation have enacted bans or protected abortion rights. A state can now enact legislation protecting or restricting abortion without any federal oversight. In order to ensure full compliance with applicable restrictions, employers may need to carefully review any abortion benefit offered within their group health plans. Insurance carriers and third-party administrators may be able to provide information regarding specific plan provisions. If necessary, employers may also wish to consult with an employee benefits lawyer regarding compliance. Our carrier partners are assessing the impact of this decision. Please check back frequently for updates.

 

Carrier Response
Aetna Pending legal review
Anthem Pending legal review
Blue Shield of California Blue Shield of California will be providing a travel reimbursement program to assist Blue Shield members living in states that implement restrictions or bans on pregnancy termination services with access to these services in other states where they remain legally available. Blue Shield will share details of the travel reimbursement program with group plan sponsors with members residing in these states; this includes fully insured and self funded groups. Groups that do not have abortion coverage (e.g. religious exemption) are not included in communications and will preemptively be opted-out of the program. Program details are pending regulatory review. There is no impact to current group premiums as a result of this program. Contracts and plan documents will not be amended, as the travel reimbursement is being made available as a program and not a plan design or benefit change. Program Details

•    Groups may opt-out of making this program available to their out-of-state members by completing this online form
•    Opt-out decisions must be received no later than July 8, 2022, to prevent members from being notified of the program.
To avoid member confusion, groups should opt-out using this form if they are providing, or intend to provide, travel reimbursement for abortion services directly to plan enrollees.
 
CaliforniaChoice Refer to enrolled carrier
CCHP Pending legal review
Cigna Cigna is exploring a travel benefit for Insured plans, as permitted by applicable law. The timelines for regulatory filing approval and product availability will vary by state.

For self-funded clients, a travel benefit is expected to be made available as a non-standard accommodation upon client request beginning July 2022. Regulatory approval would be required before Cigna could offer the travel benefit to fully insured clients. The timelines for regulatory filing approval and product availability would vary by state. Blue Shield of California will be providing a travel reimbursement program to assist Blue Shield members living in states that implement restrictions or bans on pregnancy termination services with access to these services in other states where they remain legally available. Blue Shield will share details of the travel reimbursement program with group plan sponsors with members residing in these states; this includes fully insured and self funded groups. Groups that do not have abortion coverage (e.g. religious exemption) are not included in communications and will preemptively be opted-out of the program. Program details are pending regulatory review. There is no impact to current group premiums as a result of this program. Contracts and plan documents will not be amended, as the travel reimbursement is being made available as a program and not a plan design or benefit change. Program Details

•    Groups may opt-out of making this program available to their out-of-state members by completing this online form. 
•    Opt-out decisions must be received no later than July 8, 2022, to prevent members from being notified of the program.
To avoid member confusion, groups should opt-out using this form if they are providing, or intend to provide, travel reimbursement for abortion services directly to plan enrollees.
Travel Benefits FAQ
 
Cigna + Oscar Pending legal review
Community Care Health Pending legal review
Covered CA for Small Business Refer to enrolled carrier
Health Net Pending legal review
Kaiser Permanente Pending legal review
MediExcel Health Plan Pendinag legl review
Nippon Life Benefits Pending legal review
Sharp Health Plan Pending legal review
Sutter Health Plus Pending legal review
UnitedHealthcare While UnitedHealthcare is in discussions with states related to the potential of adding travel and lodging benefits to its fully insured plans, this benefit is not presently available.

Self-funded plans administered by UnitedHealthcare, UMR and Surest® (BIND) will include travel and lodging benefits upon customer’s request subject to certain limitations. 
• Non-standard T&L options must go through the Exception Management process to ensure we can support the specific request and that the change is accurately included in plan documents and in our systems. 
• Self-funded clients must consult with their own legal counsel with regard to this benefit and any others offered under their plan.
Program Details
 
Western Health Advantage Pending legal review

 
The California Department of Insurance FAQ about insurance coverage for abortion is also available.   

Kaiser Family Foundation: State-level information
 

Source: Various Carriers