Catholic Abortion Coverage?

The Catholic Key blog in Kansas City scooped the story that the Jesuit-run University of San Francisco included abortion coverage in its mandatory Student Health Insurance Program through Aetna Insurance.

At the blog, Jack Smith gets to the bottom of it in a Q&A about the pro-abortion scandal at USF.

Q: “1. Is abortion coverage mandated in California?”

A: “No.”

“Neither the Legislature nor the court require abortion coverage in any private health plan — religious or non-religious,” writes the blogpost.

Q: “2. Aren’t these plans standardized? Isn’t abortion coverage automatic?”

A: “No.”

“The Archdiocese of San Francisco, dioceses across the United States and other Catholic institutions do not provide abortion coverage for obvious reasons. Insurance administrators accommodate this.

“For instance, Aetna, which provides the Student Health Insurance Plan at USF, also provides the Student Health Insurance Plan at Jesuit-run University of Seattle. At USF, Aetna’s plan specifically includes abortion coverage. At Seattle University, Aetna’s plan specifically excludes abortion coverage.”

Q: “3. Isn’t this probably just an unintentional mistake by USF?”

A: “An oft-repeated mistake, if so.”

Cites the blog:

“As early as 2005, USF offered a student plan through BC Life & Health which included coverage for the abortion pill. The policy stated there was a 10% in-plan/30% out-of-plan copay for Prescription drug for ‘elective abortion (mifepristone).’

“USF employees have also received abortion coverage in their health plans since at least 2006. USF’s Kaiser Health Plan for employees in 2006 offered ‘Voluntary termination of pregnancy’ for a $15 copayment per procedure.”

“USF’s Blue Cross employee plan in 2006 offered mifepristone and abortion coverage. In that same year, Blue Cross and Kaiser were the same insurers used by the Archdiocese of San Francisco. The Archdiocese’s plan however, specifically excluded abortion

That’s to say nothing of the 2002 controversy in which USF was “one of a handful of Catholic Universities called to task by the Association of Students at Catholic Colleges for referring students to Planned Parenthood on university websites and at student clinics.” The page, which helps make abortion appointments, is still available at the Way Back Machine.

Back when I was attending the University of San Francisco, the school made the decision to fund a pro-abortion group on campus. When a Wall Street Journal reporter called them on it, administrators immediately removed the pro-abortion group from a student event. But just to be “balanced,” they removed the Knights of Columbus student group, too.

Editor John Norton, another University of San Francisco alum, reported yesterday at Our Sunday Visitor that: “After being alerted that new student health coverage provides for abortions, the Jesuit-run University of San Francisco has pulled that provision.”

That’s good news. But given the history, it’s best to keep a watchful eye on the situation, which the Catholic Key intends to do.

— Tom Hoopes