Legislation Prohibiting Taxpayer-Funded Abortions Through Insurance Exchanges Now Law

HARRISBURG – The governor signed legislation, which passed both the House and Senate with bi-partisan votes, prohibiting abortion coverage in qualified plans offered through a health insurance exchange, Majority Leader Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny County) announced today.

“Public resources should not be used to support abortion services,” Turzai said. “Through this legislation, now law, we continue the fight to protect life and shut the back door to government-subsidized abortions.”

Act 13 of 2013 prohibits 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.

According to Turzai, the legislative intent of the federal Patient and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) was for the states to weigh in, and it gives states the authority to prohibit certain abortion coverage. Through Act 13 of 2013, the Commonwealth is weighing in by placing the new insurance system under Pennsylvania’s existing law.

Allowable exceptions under the law 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.

The law takes effect in 60 days.

Representative Mike Turzai
Majority Leader
28th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Stephen Miskin
717.772.9943 (office), 717.756.3936 (cell)
RepTurzai.com / facebook.com/RepTurzai
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