Last week’s ruling by the Supreme Court will allow the US Administration to move forward with rules that let virtually any employer or religiously affiliated university to claim religious or moral exemption from providing birth control coverage. With more than 62 million women nationwide insured through their employers, it is estimated that as many 125,000 women will lose their contraceptive coverage within one year – disproportionately impacting low income women and people of color.
We checked in with Carrie SiuButt, CEO of Simple Health, an online birth control provider and prescriber. While purchasing birth control without insurance can be cost-prohibitive for some, Simple Health and its telemedicine model works to make the process easier and more affordable. In our interview we spoke about
In our interview Carrie talks about the impact of the new ruling – both on affected women and Simple Health business model.
What was your first reaction, when you heard about the recent ruling by the Supreme Court?
It was deeply disappointing to see the Supreme Court give employers the ability to control the reproductive options available to their employees. At Simple Health, we believe that reproductive freedom is critical to the success of all people in our society and that decisions about birth control and reproductive options are best left to a patient and their doctor.
There is a popular tweet from Padma Lakshmi making the rounds on social media about how medications like viagra are covered legally by many insurers / employers with zero contention, yet birth control is somehow exempt from that status due to ‘moral’ and ‘religious’ exemption. This is so hypocritical and a massive double standard that has especially afflicted women and individuals who take birth control for reasons outside of contraception, such as PCOS and endometriosis .
What do you recommend to women who are affected? What are their options?
With more than 62 million women nationwide insured through their employers, It is estimated that as many as 125,000 women will lose their contraceptive coverage within one year – disproportionately impacting low income women and people of color.
While purchasing birth control without insurance can be cost-prohibitive for many, our telemedicine model makes the process easier and more affordable. Simple Health’s annual prescription fee is only $20 and that includes complete care for a year. Birth control itself is typically free for those with insurance, and starts at $15 dollars a month for those paying out-of-pocket.
At Simple Health, we ship birth control to all fifty states (for free) and can prescribe birth control for people who live in one of 27 eligible States and are of the eligible minimum age.
Is Simple Health’s business affected by this decision?
Since the pandemic began, Simple Health has seen a massive influx of new patients, more than doubling our patient base from February 2020.
This decision—which could force as many as 125,000 women to lose their contraceptive coverage in the next year alone—will drive more people to seek affordable out-of-pocket alternatives, including telehealth providers like Simple Health.
We will continue to ensure that all people, regardless of whether they have insurance or not, have the ability to access affordable birth control if and when they want to.