Days after the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade’s protection of abortion rights, medical device companies are among those reassuring workers about healthcare access.
Corporate communications to employees and the public at large come as trigger laws in nearly half of the states outlaw abortion immediately.
Some medtech companies are not using the word “abortion” in their statements to news media.
Here is what we’re finding out at MassDevice and Medical Design & Outsourcing:
“Hologic’s purpose is enabling healthier lives everywhere, every day, and our passion is to be global champions for women’s health. Through this lens, we are concerned that women’s health and women’s rights in the U.S. are taking a significant step backward with the Supreme Court’s ruling overturning Roe v. Wade. We know that many people in our organization have strong views about the Court’s historic ruling and despite the varying personal opinions, as an organization dedicated to advancing women’s health, Hologic believes that all women, including our employees and their families, deserve access to the best and most comprehensive healthcare.
“To that point, Hologic’s U.S. health insurance plans will continue to offer comprehensive reproductive health coverage, including abortion services. Although a significant majority of our employees live in states where access will likely remain legal, there will be many states where abortion care will no longer be available. To address this gap, Hologic has expanded our medical coverage to include reimbursement for eligible travel expenses when traveling to obtain abortion services where they are legal. Additionally, our employees have access to benefits that provide counseling and a wide range of additional emotional support services. Mental health is as important as physical health, and we encourage our employees to engage these services, whether to work through specific health situations or more generalized concerns and stressors of the broader environment.” – statement shared by spokesperson Jane Mazur.
“We understand and respect this topic is an important and deeply personal one for many. 3M supports its people through robust benefits that help ensure good reproductive health to meet their individual needs, as well as a variety of programs intended to support families at all stages of life. This includes comprehensive medical benefits plans, covering routine prenatal and postnatal care, prenatal education, medically necessary and elective abortion care, support for birth control, fertility support, adoption and surrogacy support, and up to 6 months of parental leave. Our Short-Term Disability Plan also allows for abortion-related absences. We are reviewing the Supreme Court decision and evaluating what it means and how it impacts employees and our benefit plans.” – statement shared by spokesperson Tim Post.
CEO Bryan Hanson in a statement to employees said that the company will not advocate for or against abortion. “I don’t believe this is a place or time for individuals in leadership, or leadership teams, to allow their personal beliefs to be imposed on others. This is clearly an extremely personal decision, and should remain that way.”
Hanson, however, also said that ZB will be there for its team members, regardless of where they live. “The situation is fluid and many states have not yet weighed in, but our company is committed to providing reimbursement for U.S. team members who need to travel for our covered medical services not available within 100 miles of their home, including reproductive healthcare.
“This, as well as many other topics and issues on the table right now, is deeply personal and people feel justifiably passionate about it. Ultimately, we believe that team members should make their own healthcare decisions in consultation with their healthcare provider — and, ZB intends to support those decisions by ensuring equal, consistent and safe access to the benefits we provide for our team members. … Thank you for caring for and respecting one another during this time.”
This story originally ran on June 28, 2022. Updated June 29 with a statement from Hologic.