DearColleague.us

Letter

 

From: The Honorable Suzan K. DelBene
Sent By:
casey.katims@mail.house.gov

Date: 6/30/2016

Become an Original Cosponsor of the
Birth Control Privacy Act

Supported by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the Center for Reproductive Rights, the National Partnership
for Women & Families, and the National Women’s Law Center

Deadline for Originals: Thursday, July 7th

Dear Colleague:

If a woman stops filling her prescription for birth control, her boss shouldn’t be the first to know. Unfortunately, workplace wellness programs may be putting the privacy of women’s most personal medical decisions at risk.

A recent article from the Wall Street Journal revealed that some administrators of workplace wellness programs are mining workers’ health data to predict who might become pregnant — by scanning medical claims, identifying women who stop filling prescriptions for birth control, and cross-referencing that information with women’s ages, family sizes, and other data. 

While these programs say they don’t share information about individual workers with employers, existing laws do not consistently prevent such disclosures from occurring. And
there are huge risks for women if their personal health data is exposed. Women across the country continue to face discrimination at work when they become pregnant or try to conceive a child. If employers can identify when a woman decides to stop using contraception
— whether it’s for family planning purposes or not — that can mean lost jobs, missed opportunities for advancement, and diminished financial stability. 

Congress must ensure clear safeguards are in place to protect women’s privacy. That’s why I’m introducing the
Birth Control Privacy Act, which will explicitly prohibit workplace wellness programs from sharing personally identifiable information (PII) with employers about their workers’ use of birth control. By eliminating confusion in existing law and establishing
strong safeguards for women’s privacy, we can prevent potentially disastrous exposures of personal health data and protect the financial security of millions of women and their families.

A woman’s decisions about contraception and family planning are nobody’s business but her own. I invite you to join me in this important effort. For more information or to
cosponsor, please contact Casey Katims at 5-6311 or
Casey.Katims@mail.house.gov
.

Sincerely,

Suzan DelBene
Member of Congress