France plans to offer contraceptives for women up to the age of 25 to assist young women with the financial costs of protection against pregnancy.
This is to begin next year, the French Health Minister Olivier Véran said on Thursday Sept 9,2021. The initiative was as a response of the government to the decline in the use of contraceptives among some young women due to the cost. The Government thereby made it known that it would set aside about 21 million or 25 million euros to pay for all types of contraceptives including IUDs and also cover all consultations on their use.
Mr. Véran explained why the age of 25 was chosen as threshold and said, “because it is an age that corresponds in terms of economic life, social life and income, with more autonomy” and also because 25 is the age people are no longer covered by their parents’ health insurance.
Previously, contraception had been made completely free regardless of insurance, to girls of ages of 15 to 18 but was later offered last year to girls under 15, as part of a bid to prevent underage abortions. Meanwhile, abortions have been made free to all women and girls in France since 2012.
Véran further said” it is intolerable that young women cannot protect themselves, cannot have contraception if they choose to do so because it is too expensive for them” as the reason behind the initiative. However according to Albane Gaillot, a French legislator, he presumes that financial cost is not the only obstacle to contraception use.
He expressed his opinions that,” there is a lack of information regarding contraception use, but more importantly regarding sexuality and its implications. There needs to be better communication and information about the different contraceptives available for women and the possibility to access doctors that will help women choose an option that suits them.
Most European countries such as Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and Norway, make contraception free for teens. Also under Britain’s National Health Service, some forms of contraception are freely available.