Under the Federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Americans can purchase individual health insurance policies in state-specific online marketplaces, or exchanges. In 2013, Governor Robert McDonnell attached an amendment to House Bill 1900 prohibiting any policy sold in Virginia’s health exchange from covering abortion, even if purchased with private dollars. If you purchase an exchange or marketplace policy and want abortion coverage, you would need to purchase a separate abortion rider. Before Governor McDonnell’s amendment, most insurance policies in the private market included coverage for abortion.
House Bill 1900 was sponsored by Delegate Tom Rush (R-Fairfax). The House of Delegates voted 55-37 and the State Senate voted 20-19 to approve Governor McDonnell’s amendment banning abortion coverage.