Doctor: Birth control protects health, too

Feb. 17, 2012 at 8:44 PM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 17 (UPI) -- A U.S. physician documented the need for contraception for women's health and explained birth control is necessary for more than preventing pregnancy.

Dr. Douglas Laube, board chairman of the Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health, submitted testimony to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in support of the recent Department of Health and Human Services rule requiring employers to provide insurance coverage for contraception without co-pays to their workers.

"Millions of Americans work every day for their insurance," Laube's testimony began. "They should be able to rely on that insurance to cover the costs of staying healthy instead of waiting for approval from their employers' religions.

He cited the example of a practicing Catholic named Maria, who bled heavily after her first menstrual period and needed to be admitted to a hospital and get a blood transfusion.

"The best treatment for Maria's condition (menorrhagia) was birth control pills," he said. "They regulate the menstrual cycle and prevent dangerous bleeding."

In another example, Mary, a 28-year-old mother of two, working as a medical assistant at a religiously affiliated hospital, had multiple complications with her most recent pregnancy and was told she should never become pregnant again," Laube said.

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