An Uncertain Development in the HHS Mandate

As Mark reports below, President Obama announced this afternoon that the Administration is reversing the decision to require religious employers to pay for health plans which cover contraceptives and abortifacients.  The insurers will instead be required to cover them for free.  [UPDATE: I have amended the title of this post and stricken out the material above because at this point, given the first question that I raise below, I am deeply uncertain exactly what this change means.  More soon.]  There remains the issue of what the religious institutions will be required to tell their employees about the availability of these products and services.

ADDENDUM: Some additional questions beyond the issue of what religious institutions will need to say to their employees about the availability of contraceptives through their insurer: (1) Won’t the insurer simply pass the cost of the products and services which it is being compelled provide onto the insureds, including the religious institutions?; (2) What happens when a religious institution is self-insured?; (3) Exactly who qualifies for exemption under the rule?

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