OLYMPIA – The Washington State Senate voted 28-17 today to pass the Reproductive Health Access for All Act (RHAA).
Senate Bill 5602, sponsored by Sen. Emily Randall (D-Bremerton), prohibits health care discrimination on the basis of immigration status or gender identity.
“Our state has a proud history of protecting and expanding reproductive freedom,” said Randall. “But our transgender and undocumented neighbors have faced continued discrimination and barriers to care. This bill protects the most vulnerable communities and provides access to the essential health care they need and deserve.”
The RHAA creates a state-funded program to cover family planning services for undocumented Washingtonians who would be eligible for the federal Take Charge program if not for their immigration status. It also prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity in all reproductive health services covered by Medicaid and private insurance plans. In addition, it extends reproductive health care access requirements to student health plans.
Last year, the Senate passed Sen. Steve Hobbs’s Reproductive Parity Act (SB 6219), which required all insurance plans in Washington state that cover maternity care to also cover the full range of reproductive health services.
The bill now goes to the state House of Representatives for consideration.