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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Viagra or Contraception: Supreme Court to Interfere in Women's Right to Health Care

It makes no sense for the US Supreme Court to become involved in still another trumped up challenge to a legally implemented health care reform law, aka Obamacare. This time around, the court will hear another right wing driven challenge under the pretense of protecting the freedom of religious groups to prevent the coverage of women's contraception under the Affordable Care Act. 

But, will the court also intervene about a man's right to seek coverage under the Obamacare exchange plans, for Viagra, the treatment of male erectile dysfunction? Viagra is paid for by many health plans and prescription drug benefits. Contraception isn't.

There's a huge difference between Viagra and contraception coverage. One is a male sexual enhancer while the other protects women from risks associated with too many pregnancies.

Women seek reproductive health care, including contraception, because we choose to avoid the risks associated with bearing too many children. Bearing too many children can precipitate risk for gall bladder disease, urinary tract anomalies and diabetes. Moreover, too many pregnancies challenges a family's economic ability to support healthy children.

On the other hand, Viagra is a treatment for a very specific male issue correlated directly with his ability to be sexually active. There's no health protection gained from a typical Viagra prescription. Often, Viagra is helpful for men who have erectile dysfunction related to diabetes or neuromuscular diseases, but the intention of the drug therapy is always to increase a man's virility. Viagra does nothing to protect a man's systemic health. In fact, I'd argue that Viagra puts men at risk for contracting veneral diseases.

I simply don't understand religious groups obsession over women's reproduction while men are free to seek aphrodisiacs from snake oil salesmen or have prescription drug coverage for Viagra. In fact, if men were only virile once a month, women would likely need less contraception.  

Now the US Supreme Court has decided to create even more controversy about women's health by hearing the case for contraception coverage in the Health Care Reform law.  

My question to the Justices is this: How many Supreme Court Justices know how their mother's practiced contraception?  No doubt, every Justice has a mother and these women either abstained from sex or created some other methodology for preventing too many pregnancies.

Would the Supreme Court Justices recommend that women return to the methods used by their own mothers to space their pregnancies?

It's ridiculous for the Supreme Court of the United States to continue fueling the right wing obsession with women's reproductive health under the auspices of religious practices.  

At the end of the day, trust me, every woman finds a way to practice contraception. Neither the Supreme Court or anybody else should have any influence whatsoever about how a woman chooses to prevent multiple pregnancies.  

As for who pays for contraception? Well, if men received contraception therapy instead of Viagra coverage under their insurance plans, women likely wouldn't need contraception coverage at all. 

Therefore, the Supreme Court's tax payer paid for interference in a woman's right to health care isn't fair because, "What's good for the goose must also be good for the gander."

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