Ala. Senate says no abortion in health exchange

The Alabama Senate has passed a bill to prohibit any insurance plan offered through a health insurance exchange in Alabama from offering coverage for elective abortions.

The bill sponsored by Republican Sen. Greg Reed of Jasper cleared the Senate 30-2 Tuesday and now goes to the House for consideration. Reed got a similar bill through the Senate last year, but it died in the House.

Reed said the federal health care law allows states to opt out of allowing abortion coverage in their insurance exchanges, which would include those purchasing federally subsidized plans and others.

States are supposed to have their exchanges set up by 2014.

A task force created by Gov. Robert Bentley has recommended how an exchange should be established, but the Legislature has not yet approved it.

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