Obama to unveil next month his health plan that will cover abortion-inducing drugs and procedures.
The president said Monday he plans to announce the policy Wednesday, and it will cover procedures including a surgical termination of a pregnancy that is caused by rape or incest, the New York Times reported.
The plan would cover abortions up to 12 weeks after the fetus is viable, the Times reported, citing a senior administration official.
It is not clear how the Obama administration will enforce the policy, as it is not yet clear how far up the supply chain a drug is.
Obama’s plan is expected to include the following: •A plan to cover the cost of abortions up until the fetus can survive outside the womb, which can be as early as 24 weeks into the pregnancy.
•An exception for pregnancies that are due to rape or if a woman has been raped, incest or if the fetus has severe medical complications.
A person who has been diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition, such as cancer, will be covered for abortions up through 36 weeks of gestation.
The person would have to undergo an in-person abortion and must meet a hospital-recommended fetal health screening protocol.
If a woman wants an abortion but is in denial about the condition, the health care provider can refer the woman to a hospital, the officials said.
The president said his plan would be similar to that of other U.S. presidents, including Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Lyndon Johnson and Ronald Reagan.
“As a nation, we should never let politics and ideology overrule the health of our people,” Obama said.
“And if we do, we will be back to the very moment when we were at our greatest peril, when we had the highest rates of maternal and child mortality, and when we have the highest rate of infant mortality.”
The president’s plan would take effect Jan. 1, 2019, and would cover all states.
Some states have opted out of Obama’s plan and instead require patients to have an ultrasound before they can obtain a procedure, but it is unclear whether those procedures will be available in the first 100 days.