UNC Health Insurance Changes Fall Short
Special Report - August 17, 2010
The UNC Board of Governors has decided to offer a version of their recently-instituted system-wide base health insurance plan for students that will not cover abortion, but has failed to address concerns regarding cost or paying into a pool that covers abortion for others. In an email to Students for Life of America, the Board of Governors indicated that it has directed the insurance provider, “Pearce and Pearce to contact via email all UNC students who have chosen to enroll in the University-sponsored plan for the fall 2010 semester in order to provide the opportunity for any student to opt-out of the elective abortion coverage. The inclusion of this elective coverage had no impact whatsoever in setting the premium for the University-sponsored plan.”
Under this decision, students who opt out of the coverage for elective abortions will pay the same premium as on plans that include elective abortion coverage. Additionally, there will not be a differential between premium pools, so all students will pay into a pool that covers elective abortions, regardless of whether their own plan does. Several pro-life groups have raised concerns that both of these facts could represent a violation of the federal Hyde Amendment, which prohibits the use of federal funds for abortions, since students who enroll in either version of the plan may be paying for it with federal grants or loans.
Not yet addressed by the Board of Governors is the plan provision to cover health insurance for a “domestic partner,” a term not defined in state law. The system-wide base plan coverage lists a “domestic partner” as a “student’s eligible dependent.”
Plan Covers Abortion And Partners - August 10, 2010
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