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Massachusetts

Insurance Prohibition for Abortion

Does Massachusetts prohibit private insurance plans from covering abortion services? No.  

Does Massachusetts prohibit plans in its state exchange from covering abortion services?
No.  

Does Massachusetts prohibit insurance plans for public employees from covering abortion services?
In some cases.  Health-insurance policies purchased by the state for its employees may not include coverage for certain post-viability abortion procedures, with exceptions only to save a woman's life or if continuation of the pregnancy will impose a "substantial risk of grave impairment" on the woman's physical or mental health.  1996 Mass. Legis. Serv. ch. 366, § 15 (Enacted 1996).  Health maintenance organizations may not be required to provide payment or referrals for abortion unless necessary to save a woman's life.  Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 176G, § 17 (Original Statute Enacted 1976; Relevant Provision Enacted 1979).

Does Massachusetts prohibit the purchase of extra coverage for abortion services?
No.  Nothing in the law prohibits the purchase of abortion coverage through an optional rider; in theory, women may purchase a separate policy and pay an extra premium to receive abortion coverage.  However, nothing in the law requires an insurer to make such riders available and there is little evidence that insurers offer these products.  1996 Mass. Legis. Serv. ch. 366, § 15 (Enacted 1996).  


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