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Planned Parenthood clinic in Chicago, Illinois. Photo: Scott Olson via Getty Images

Another significant change in HHS' program integrity rule: The department wants insurers to send consumers separate bills for medical coverage and whatever coverage they might provide for abortion.

How it works: Federal law says federal funding — including premium subsidies under the ACA — can't be used to cover abortion, and requires insurers to segregate the money they use to provide coverage for abortion services.

  • That segregation will need to include a whole separate billing process if this proposed rule is finalized.
  • HHS said insurers should "send an entirely separate monthly bill to the consumer for only the portion of premium attributable to abortion coverage" — which, according to earlier policy outlines, could be as low as $1.

On a similar note, HHS also finalized rules yesterday making it easier for employers to opt out of the ACA's contraception mandate if they have religious — or, in some cases, moral — objections to birth control.

  • Small businesses, schools, insurance companies and individuals can claim either a religious or moral exemption.
  • Large, for-profit employers do not appear to be able to claim the moral exemption, but non-profits and small businesses can.

The other side: ACA legal expert Nicholas Bagley has argued that the exemption for moral objections is illegal.

Go deeper

Updated 21 mins ago - Health

WHO: Delta health measures help fight Omicron

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Health measures taken to combat COVID-19 before the emergence of Omicron would also help against the new variant of concern, World Health Organization officials said Friday.

What they're saying: Takeshi Kasai, WHO regional director for the Western Pacific, said during a virtual briefing broadcast from Manila, Philippines, that border controls imposed by the U.S. and other nations can "buy time" to deal with the variant, but warned "every country and every community must prepare for new surges in cases."

2 hours ago - Health

Nevada to impose insurance surcharge on unvaccinated state workers

Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Nevada's Public Employees' Benefit Program Board voted Thursday to charge workers enrolled in public employee health insurance plans a surcharge of up to $55 a month if they're not vaccinated against COVID-19, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

Why it matters: Nevada is the first state to announce such a move, per AP.

Oklahoma sues Biden administration over Pentagon vaccine mandate

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin testifies before a House Armed Services Committee hearing on Sept. 29 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Olivier Douliery/Pool via Getty Images

The state of Oklahoma filed a lawsuit against the Biden administration on Thursday in an attempt to block the enforcement of its vaccine mandate for federal employees.

Why it matters: The move comes one day after Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin denied Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt's (R) request to exempt the state's National Guard from the mandate.