Sen. Shimabukuro’s SB-502 IVF Equal Coverage Bill Update 4/24/17

Bill seeks in-vitro fertilization coverage equality
By Taylor Polson
Star-Advertiser, April 12, 2017

Lawmakers are once again considering a measure to require insurance companies to offer in-vitro fertilization coverage to same-sex couples, unmarried couples and unmarried women.

Advocates of the measure say the current system amounts to discrimination because only married, heterosexual couples currently qualify for the benefit.

Planned Parenthood, in supporting Senate Bill 502, wrote that, at present, “insurance coverage discriminates against and essentially restricts a person’s reproduction based on their sex, sexual orientation and/or marital status. This kind of discrimination simply has no place in Hawaii law.”

The LGBT Caucus of the Democratic Party also offered testimony in strong support of the measure, which passed the state Senate and is up for a vote in the House this week.

Sen. Maile shimabukuro (D, Kalaeloa-­Waianae-Makaha), who introduced the bill, said this is the third session at which such legislation has been presented. She said similar measures weren’t passed in previous sessions in part because insurance companies were concerned about expenses.  Continue reading