It’s Wednesday, bright and early! The birds are chirping and the coffee is brewing. As I walk briskly into the health center there is a change in the air. Young women are leaving their appointments with birth control and are NOT paying any additional costs! Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, women like me can get the contraception we need without copays.
Before the new health care law, the biggest obstacle surrounding birth control for thousands of young women was cost. Many couldn’t afford the monthly copays on their student budgets. Now, young women are stoked about not having another necessity to pay for and stress about. For most students, college isn’t the time when we want to become parents. So this provision, which helps us plan our future, is a really exciting development.
I have personally seen the benefits of birth control without copays. In the last two years, five of my friends have had unintended pregnancies, and none of them was using birth control at the time. When I asked why they hadn’t used contraception, the overarching answer was the cost of the pill, and the difficulty of trying to obtain it. Now these five friends are using contraception and they couldn’t be happier.
I’ve seen the stress my friends deal with being a mother, a student and an employee all at the same time, and I know that’s not for me. Don’t get me wrong – I love being an aunt, a godmother and a pseudo mom, but babies are simply not on my immediate horizon. I’m staying healthy by making sure that I stay on the pill until I’m ready to start a family.
I know that many young women, especially those in my school’s health center, share my opinion too, especially since some of us are still in school or getting ready to start our careers. I’m sure they’d also agree with me when I say that this Valentine’s Day, I’m in love with something new. I’m in love with the health care law for providing coverage of the birth control I need without copays.
Samantha Daley is a senior at the University of Central Florida majoring in Health Sciences with a concentration in Pre-Clinical Sciences and minoring in Women Studies. She is a chapter leader and Student Correspondent for Choice USA, a youth focused and youth directed organization centered on reproductive justice. You can read more from Samantha at CHOICEWORDS.