On January 24, 2020, the Trump administration warned the State of California to reverse course on its requirement that abortion be covered by private health insurers. If the state refuses to back down on its coercive policy, it may lose some federal funds.
According to Politico, the California policy “violates a federal ban on discriminating against health care entities that refuse to cover abortion services or refer patients for the procedure when taxpayer dollars are involved.” The administration has given the state 30 days to comply.
“‘If states receive federal funds from HHS and other agencies, they cannot discriminate against health plans that decline to pay for abortion. Period. Full stop,’ Roger Severino, who leads HHS’ Office for Civil Rights, told reporters on a call Friday morning. ‘We want California to come to the table so people won’t be forced to choose between having insurance coverage for their families and following their conscience.’”
Sadly, New York is one of five other states that have similar abortion coverage requirements. New York’s requirement is currently being challenged in court.
To date, Gov. Gavin Newsom is standing firm in response to his state’s appalling policy.
The Trump administration’s action arose from a complaint from a Roman Catholic order that has unsuccessfully sued the State of California because of the policy. After losing its lawsuit, the Missionary Guadalupanas of the Holy Spirit complained to the Office for Civil Rights, which investigated.