December 20, 2022

Catholic Medical Association Applauds Court Ordered Decision to Restore FABMs Insurance Requirements

Catholic Medical Association Applauds Court Ordered Decision to Restore FABMs Insurance Requirements

Catholic Medical Association applauds a court ordered decision to restore insurance requirements for fertility awareness-based family planning methods to the Affordable Care Act after the Biden administration illegally removed it last year.

The court sided in favor of CMA member, Dr. Cami Jo Tice-Harouff, who sued the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in the matter.

In November of 2021, CMA issued public comments about FABM, recommending that instruction in fertility awareness-based methods continue to be provided for women desiring an alternative method in tracking fertility.

Dr. Tice-Harouff was represented by attorneys with Alliance Defending Freedom who issued the following statement regarding this legal victory:

Court delivers victory for women seeking alternative family planning method, blocks Biden admin’s illegal action

ADF attorneys secure favorable settlement in federal lawsuit for Dr. Cami Jo Tice-Harouff, countless women

TYLER, Texas – A federal court issued an order Tuesday restoring fertility awareness-based methods of family planning to health insurance plans nationwide that cover at least 58 million women. The court’s order restores language to requirements issued under the Affordable Care Act that provide women coverage for these alternative family planning methods after the Biden administration illegally eliminated it one year ago without responding to any public objections or giving any explanation for the change.

Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys had argued for that result in the lawsuit Tice-Harouff v. Johnson, in which they represent a Texas licensed nurse practitioner. Dr. Cami Jo Tice-Harouff provides patients with instruction in several different evidence-based fertility awareness methods of family planning.

“The Biden administration can’t illegally impose its own preferred contraceptive methods on all women without even allowing them to express their views. When it comes to family planning, countless women depend on fertility awareness-based methods to help them raise families in a manner consistent with their unique needs,” said ADF Senior Counsel Julie Marie Blake. “We’re pleased to favorably settle this case on behalf of our client, Dr. Tice-Harouff, who is providing experienced care to women across the country, and on behalf of all the women who use fertility awareness-based methods and can now keep their preferred doctor and insurance coverage.”

In August, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division, issued an ordertemporarily blocking the Biden administration’s procedurally flawed attempt to eliminate language requiring health insurance coverage of fertility awareness-based methods of family planning. Tuesday’s order undoes the administration’s illegal action and finally restores the key language requiring that coverage of “instruction in fertility awareness-based methods … should be provided for women desiring an alternative method.”

The Affordable Care Act prevents insurance plans from imposing any cost-sharing requirements on women seeking “preventative care and screenings,” as defined by a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In 2016, HHS included “instruction in fertility awareness-based methods” as part of this requirement. However, in December 2021, HHS removed that language from its list without using the notice-and-comment process or giving any rationale, both of which are mandated by the Administrative Procedure Act.

Tice-Harouff, who is a licensed nurse practitioner in Tyler with a doctorate in nursing practice, is also licensed in several other states. She donates the proceeds she receives from insurance providers to a non-profit clinic through which she provides health care to patients in need.

  • Pronunciation guide: Harouff (Hair-OFF’)

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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