KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Abortion Debate Rekindled By Health Reform Efforts

"Efforts to reform the healthcare system have added new spark to America's long-running abortion debate," the Christian Science Monitor reports, despite lawmaker's efforts to make the overhaul bills "abortion neutral." A version of the House bill would allow publicly-operated insurance plans or subsidized insurance policies to cover abortion, so long as the actual procedures were paid for out of premiums. Anti-abortion advocates call that compromise meaningless, since the subsidies could allow the uninsured to buy new plans that allow abortion. "This bill would be the largest expansion of abortion since Roe v. Wade," a talk-radio host said. However, so far, no bill specifically says what services would be covered under the public plan. Anti-abortion activists want specific language forbidding coverage for the procedure (Feldmann, 8/21).

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