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Women treated unfairly in health care debate

To the Editor:

We’ve all heard the remark “Follow The Money.” It’s more important than ever to look behind all those proposals made by the current crop of presidential candidates. Who is paying how much? Why? Whose pocket will those PAC dollars ultimately benefit?

Current positions taken by these men about women’s health care are an abomination. We women need to look at the reasons for these remarks. Who is pulling the strings behind all the false, implausibly detrimental information.  

President Obama’s health care law requires that new health insurance plans cover preventive services with no co-pay or deductible. In the last 18 months, a new provision of the Affordable Care Act has done exactly that for approximately 20.4 million women with private health insurance.

The requirement is that women’s insurance carriers include this protection, and importantly, do not discriminate against women. Women collectively already pay $1 billion more than men do for health care, according to a recent study by the Women’s Law Center.             

Furthermore, this is not a war on religion! Women’s access to health care has nothing to do with religion — yours or theirs. It is only about women’s complete access to necessary and available health care. Access and availability are key! Rather it appears this contrived war on religion is actually a “War on Women”, solely motivated by political and financial gain.

No government entity is forcing unneeded benefits on you, and tax dollars are not paying for coverage within these insurances. Despicably, these candidates would not only impose their religious beliefs on all of us, but would actually have your tax dollars pay for unnecessary and often invasive medical procedures on women.

Peculiarly, no candidate calls for similar medical processes for men, denies men PSA tests nor speaks to the hypocrisy of covering costs for mens endlessly advertised (ahem) problems.  

Women’s reproduction and health issues are not the business of men running for office, nor the business of men of the church.  

The issues of our coming election are many and important. This is not one of them.

So who benefits? Who wins at the expense of women’s health care? Who wins if women are denied health insurance coverage for contraception, prenatal care, pregnancy related situations, cervical cancer tests, mammograms, ovarian cysts, - the list is long. Denying insurance coverage certainly won’t be a win for you, me, our daughters, or our granddaughters.

Look closely at claims made by every office seeker for town hall, state house, or the halls of Congress in D.C. Are they speaking to benefit you and me, or the “corporatocracy?” Will they advocate for our future, or the bottom line of company profits?  

And you! Will you vote against your own best interest? Will you wake after the elections and realize you’ve ruined your own and your children’s future?

You’re told costs are too high? Really? For whom? You surely want needed benefits for your family. You’re told budget cuts will reduce the deficit? Seriously? How will that work when taxpayers must cover the cost of those whose only option will be to crowd emergency rooms, the welfare offices, and state institutions already seeing less income!  

Just whose already bulging pockets will benefit? And finally, who is in charge in the U.S.A. these days? Us, or the beneficiaries of the Citizens United v. FEC decision?

Yes! Follow the Money.”  

Shirl Ches