Bill to allow 12-month prescriptions of birth control killed by Idaho Senate panel

BOISE, Idaho - An Idaho Senate panel has killed a Democratic senator's bill to allow women to receive up to a 12-month supply of prescribed birth control.

Currently, many Idaho insurance providers have a one-month or three-month limit.

The bill's sponsor Sen. Cherie Buckner-Webb, who is from Boise, says birth control is dependent on consistent use and allowing women to have access to a year's supply will particularly help women in rural areas with limited access to pharmacies.

"A year's supply of birth control is a solution that works for women and their families," Buckner-Webb said. 

Legislators opposing the legislation questioned the necessity of the bill.

"Part of managing life is making sure that you prepare and get places on time and that you get your medications," Sen. Tony Potts, R-Idaho Falls, said. "I just can't get behind the fact that we need to mandate this."

Eleven states have such laws in place. The bill failed on a 5-4 vote. 

“Planned Parenthood Votes is disappointed that our elected leaders can’t support this commonsense solution to remove birth control barriers in Idaho," said Mistie Tolman, Idaho Legislative Director at Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest and Hawaii. "At a time when politicians nationwide are chipping away at women's health care access, we had a chance to help women and families across this state, but we failed."

The Associated Press contributed to this article. 

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