Planned Parenthood-Backed California Bill Would Force Insurance Companies To Keep Secrets From Parents, Spouses

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A bill up for consideration in California would compel insurance companies to pay for “sensitive” medical procedures given to dependents and minor children while keeping such services hidden from parents.

If signed into law, SB 1004 would cover abortions, drug abuse and mental health treatment, and, potentially, “gender identity-affirming” procedures like cross-sex hormones and surgery.

The bill is a part of Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California’s 2020 Legislative Priorities. The abortion giant says of the bill:

When a patient accesses care for a sensitive service, including sexual and reproductive health care, confidentiality is of the utmost importance. Communications related to their health insurance, however, is not always confidential and the patient seeking services are often times not the policyholder of their health care coverage. This bill will expand upon California’s existing protections to ensure that information about any sensitive services they receive is not sent to a third party they do not want to receive it, like an abusive spouse or their parents.

According to a fact-sheet from bill author Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson, (D-Santa Barbara), the bill will ensure that patients, including consenting minors, “can successfully and safely use their rightful insurance to access needed care without fearing that their private healthcare information will land in the hands of someone who could potentially hurt or shame them for their health care decisions.”

An issue brief from the California Healthcare Foundation reports that California law currently allows minors of various ages to consent to the following medical procedures and treatments: Abortion, Treatment for drug- and alcohol-related problems, HIV/AIDS testing and treatment, Diagnosis or treatment of certain infectious, contagious, or communicable diseases, including sexually transmitted diseases, Mental health treatment and counseling, Treatment or prevention of pregnancy, including family planning and contraception, Rape treatment, and Sexual assault treatment.

Under SB 1004, insurance companies would be criminally charged if they let parents know their health insurance policy was paying for any of these treatments for their dependents or minor children.

While so-called “transgender health services” are not currently on the extensive list of treatments to which a minor may consent, a senior attorney with the Pacific Justice Institute (PJI) believes that a 23-year-old California Supreme Court decision could be used to justify letting minors consent to transgender drugs without parental approval, according to the California Family Council:

PJI Senior Attorney Kevin Snider pointed to American Academy of Pediatrics v. Lundgren, a 1997 California Supreme Court decision he said, “emasculated parental rights… leaving moms and dads impotent to act as parents.” Snider explained how this case overturned a law requiring parental notification before a minor can have an abortion. The State’s high court found “that minors have informational and autonomy privacy in terms of intimate personal decisions, which trumps the rights of parents.  It is doubtful that the ruling would not extend to minors ingesting cross-sex hormones,” Snider said.

At this point, SB 1004 has not yet been assigned to a Senate committee for a hearing and will not be assigned a hearing until the Senate returns to session in May.

If you are a Californian, please consider reaching out to Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson’s office with your concerns regarding this dangerous bill. It is simply untenable to force parents to unknowingly pay for “services,” especially those that may harm their children.

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