BOSTON (WWLP) – Reproductive health has been at the forefront of debates in this Country since the overturning of Roe, a new report shows that out of pocket expenses for birth control significantly decreased in Massachusetts.

The Massachusetts Health Policy Commission released a report showing the drop of patient cost-sharing. Since 2012, commercial insurers were required to cover at least one form of each type of birth control without patients having to pay part of the cost.

After the passage of that federal law, cost sharing for birth control went from around 98% in 2012 to 6.5% in 2014. Those numbers dropped even further in the state in recent years with less and 2 percent of patients from 2017 to 2020 having to pay for their birth control. The report also looked into unintended pregnancies. The report showed that from 2014 to 2018, unintended pregnancies dropped almost 2% points among women in the lowest income group.

Rebecca Hart Holder, President of Reproductive Equity Now telling 22News, “We know that getting co-pay free contraception not only lowers the rate of unintended pregnancy, but it also has really important side effects for gender equality. That includes increased participation in the workforce, better health outcomes in general, and lower rates of poverty.”

The report also found despite state law that allows for a 12-month supply of birth control, most women do not receive 12 months. They attribute this to the lack of familiarity with the law.

Now, the FDA Advisory committee voted unanimously to approve the first-ever application for over the counter contraception.