Frequently Asked Questions about Contraceptive Coverage

For Students on the Aetna Student Health Insurance Plan

When will the changes to the University’s student health insurance plan related to the coverage of contraceptives take effect?
The changes to the student health insurance plan related to contraceptive coverage will take effect August 15, 2018. 

Why is the University making changes with regard to contraceptive coverage under its medical plans?
Fr. Jenkins sent a letter to the campus community in February explaining the reasons for the changes. To read the letter, please visit here.

How were the decisions made about which contraceptives would be covered under the University’s medical plans?
Recommendations about coverage were formulated after consultation with moral theologians and medical experts, and considering comments from the University community. These recommendations were then approved by Fr. Jenkins.  

Where can I get more information about the Catholic Church’s teaching on contraception?
As Fr. Jenkins indicated in his letter to the campus community in February, the University will provide to all who sign up for health care benefits a statement of the Catholic teaching on contraception. There will also be references to further material for those interested in learning more. The statement and references will be made available on July 1st.

Which contraceptive drugs will be covered under the University’s student health insurance plan?
Hormonal contraceptives whose primary purpose is either to prevent ovulation and/or to prevent fertilization will be covered. The list of covered contraceptives, which includes oral contraceptives, injectables, hormonal patches, and vaginal rings, will become part of the University’s Aetna Formulary effective August 15 and can be found here: Formulary Contraceptives. Those contraceptives that have as their primary function the prevention of implantation or interference with the development of a pregnancy are not covered under the University’s plans. Emergency contraceptives are also not covered.

Are IUDs and contraceptive implants covered under the University’s student health insurance plan?
Certain IUDs and contraceptive implants are covered under the University’s student health insurance plan, specifically those that have as their primary mechanism either the prevention of ovulation and/or the prevention of fertilization. (Note: Because IUDs and implants require placement by a medical provider, the provision of these forms of contraception is considered a medical service.) Copper IUDs are not covered.

What Natural Family Planning services will be covered under the University’s student health insurance plan? 
Counseling and Instructional office visits that are associated with Natural Family Planning, as well as essential equipment, such as fertility monitors and the associated testing strips, will be covered under the plan.  

Is there a co-payment for contraceptive drugs and services as there is for other drugs and services under the University's student health insurance plan?
Yes, the out-of-pocket costs for contraceptives are the same as for other drugs and services under the University's student health insurance plan.

Can University Health Services (UHS) physicians prescribe contraceptives? Can these prescriptions be filled at the Walgreens Pharmacy in Saint Liam Hall?
While the University does not promote the use of contraceptives, the physicians at UHS may use their medical judgment in the context of the confidential physician-patient relationship to prescribe those contraceptive drugs covered by the University’s student health insurance plan to graduate and post-baccalaureate students. Graduate and post-baccalaureate students can also fill their prescriptions for contraceptives at the Walgreens in Saint Liam Hall. 

Because of the University’s commitment in the context of its Catholic mission to the formation of undergraduates, we will continue the policy of not providing these services to undergraduates at UHS unless a prescription for contraceptives is needed to treat approved medical conditions. Prescriptions for medical conditions can continue to be filled at the Walgreens in Saint Liam Hall.

What will happen if I currently receive contraceptives through the existing contraceptive services payment plan?
The contraceptive services payment plan, made available through the University's student health insurance carrier, will no longer be offered after August 15, 2018. The student health insurance carrier will send a notice with further information.  

Can I appeal if my physician recommends a contraceptive that is not covered under the University’s student health insurance plan?
Yes, just as there is an appeal process for other drugs and services that are not covered under the plan, you can file an appeal, based on medical necessity, for coverage. To initiate an appeal, your provider should contact Aetna Student Health at 888-294-7406.

I have other questions about the contraceptive coverage that will be provided under the University's student health insurance plan. Where can I get more information?
By July 15, 2018, a Plan Summary will be available to enrollees.