Ask Ang 11/18: Affordable Birth Control
Where is a good place to get affordable birth control without my parents knowing?
The main problem you’re going to run into when it comes to getting birth control without your parents is cost. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, insurance providers cover most (if not all) of the costs of birth control, but the bills for this service will be delivered to the account holder. For many students, this is a parent.
Healthcare providers are prevented by law from directly informing your parents that you’re interested in birth control, but they could potentially find out through insurance bills. Not everyone’s parents look closely at their insurance bills, so there’s always a chance you could use insurance without their knowledge, but this option is risky.
Without insurance, birth control costs range from $15/month to over $1,000 upfront. Below is a list of cost calculations from Planned Parenthood (PP provides birth control at a reduced rate). The best way to know definitively what coverage you have is to visit a Planned Parenthood clinic (there’s one at 1110 Vermont Ave N.W.). You don’t need insurance to set up this appointment, so you can go without your parents knowing. PP is a great resource to help you sort through your options, and they can help you manage costs.
Birth Control Pills or the Birth Control Patch: $15 to $50 per month ($180 to $600/yr.)
IUD or Birth Control Implant: $500 to $1300 upfront (if you’re looking for a long-term solution, IUDs can end up costing an average of less than $100/yr.)
The Shot: $35 to $75 per shot ($240 per year)
NuvaRing: $100 per month (about $1200/yr.)