New rules requiring free access to prescription birth control for women with health insurance have gone into effect but controversy lingers at some Catholic institutions struggling to balance the requirement with their opposition to contraception.
At Georgetown University, the nation’s oldest Catholic university, students and administration officials are still wrestling with the requirement to cover contraceptives as part of larger effort to expand no-cost preventive care for women.
The requirement exempts churches and gives religious groups a one-year reprieve. Georgetown leaders, now preparing for returning students, have said they will not allow student health plans to include birth control this year.
Other religious groups are pushing back further by filing lawsuits or dropping health insurance coverage altogether.