SPRINGFIELD – To expand access to birth control – especially for women with limited financial resources – State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) passed a measure to allow people to receive contraceptives without visiting a doctor.

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“Birth control is a basic health care service and should be treated as such,” Bush said. “Providing greater access to contraceptives is providing a more equitable health care system.”

Many women struggle to access hormonal contraceptives, which historically have only been prescribed through a physician. They may not know where to go, or are unable to afford doctor’s appointments. Pharmacists, however, are typically much more accessible than a physician.

To give women easier, more affordable access to birth control, Bush championed a measure to allow pharmacists to issue hormonal contraceptives, including oral tablets, vaginal rings and topical patches.

Under the legislation, pharmacists who wish to participate would have to meet several educational requirements to provide them with the best tools to help patients complete a self-screening risk assessment. Once the assessment is finished, the pharmacist would provide counseling and education on all methods of contraception, then help the patient choose a form of birth control. 

Currently, 16 states and Washington, D.C. allow pharmacists to prescribe and dispense self-administered hormonal birth control.

“It’s simple: Birth control saves lives and prevents unplanned pregnancy,” Bush said. “Family planning and reproductive health care is a personal choice that should not be limited by economic or social status.”

Bush has been a steadfast advocate for women’s reproductive rights since first joining the General Assembly. She has spearheaded a number of measures to protect women’s health, including the monumental 2019 Reproductive Health Act, which repealed outdated abortion laws that have been blocked by the courts and ensured that reproductive health care is treated like all other health care and not as a crime.

House Bill 135 has passed both chambers.

Category: Latest

SPRINGFIELD – Illinois has more lead lines that bring drinking water into homes than any other state, but under the Lead Service Line Replacement Notification Act passed by Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake), that will change.

052620210397“Lead service lines are a health threat that poisons our children, undermines our residents’ confidence in our municipal government and costs billions of dollars,” Bush said. “This is a feasible and equitable path forward that would require all cities in Illinois to tackle a problem that we know harms Black and Latinx communities the most.”

Contained in House Bill 3739, the Lead Service Line Replacement Notification Act requires water utilities statewide to replace all lead service lines and creates a low-income water assistance program to help fund financial assistance and water projects that include lead pipe replacement.

As more cities across the country have seen increased amounts of lead in their drinking water – including Chicago, Aurora, Joliet, Cicero and Rockford – the health risk has also increased. Aside from keeping the harmful chemical out of people’s water, Bush’s measure would create up to 11,000 jobs and $115 billion in economic activity each year.

“We are finally on a path toward bringing safer drinking water into our communities,” Bush said. “Prioritizing this measure was prioritizing the health of all Illinoisans – and I appreciate my colleagues who stood by my side to pass this dire piece of legislation.”

The measure has now passed both chambers.

Category: Latest

SPRINGFIELD – To expand access to birth control – especially for women with limited financial resources – State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) is championing a measure to allow people to receive contraceptives without visiting a doctor.

051920210588“Birth control is a basic health care service and should be treated as such,” Bush said. “Providing greater access to contraceptives is providing a more equitable health care system.”

Many women struggle to access hormonal contraceptives, which historically have only been prescribed through a physician. They may not know where to go, or are unable to afford doctor’s appointments. Pharmacists, however, are typically much more accessible than a physician.

To give women easier, more affordable access to birth control, Bush is pushing a measure to allow pharmacists to issue hormonal contraceptives, including oral tablets, vaginal rings and topical patches.

Under the proposed legislation, pharmacists who wish to participate would have to meet several educational requirements to provide them with the best tools to help patients complete a self-screening risk assessment. Once the assessment is finished, the pharmacist would provide counseling and education on all methods of contraception, then help the patient choose a form of birth control. 

Currently, 16 states and Washington, D.C. allow pharmacists to prescribe and dispense self-administered hormonal birth control.

“It’s simple: Birth control saves lives and prevents unplanned pregnancy,” Bush said. “Family planning and reproductive health care is a personal choice that should not be limited by economic or social status.”

Bush has been a steadfast advocate for women’s reproductive rights since first joining the General Assembly. She has spearheaded a number of measures to protect women’s health, including the monumental 2019 Reproductive Health Act, which repealed outdated abortion laws that have been blocked by the courts and ensured that reproductive health care is treated like all other health care and not as a crime.

House Bill 135 passed the Senate Insurance Committee Wednesday and now heads to the full Senate for further consideration.

Category: Latest

SPRINGFIELD – Illinois has more lead lines that bring drinking water into homes than any other state. To make sure communities have the money to replace those lines and keep drinking water safe, State Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) has introduced the Lead Service Line Replacement Notification Act in the Senate.

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“Lead service lines are a health threat that poisons our children, undermines our residents’ confidence in our municipal government and costs billions of dollars,” Bush said. “This measure is a feasible and equitable path forward that would require all cities in Illinois to tackle a problem that we know harms Black and Latinx communities the most.”

Bush was joined by House sponsor Representative Lamont J. Robinson (D-Chicago), and representatives from the Illinois Environmental Council, Illinois Pipes Trade Association and the Natural Resources Defense Council for a press conference Thursday to discuss how the General Assembly can eliminate toxic lead in drinking water across the state. 

Contained in House Bill 3739, the Lead Service Line Replacement Notification Act requires water utilities statewide to replace all lead service lines and creates a low-income water assistance program to help fund financial assistance and water projects that include lead pipe replacement.

As more cities across the country have seen increased amounts of lead in their drinking water – including Chicago, Aurora, Joliet, Cicero and Rockford – the health risk has also increased. Aside from keeping the harmful chemical out of people’s water, Bush’s measure would create up to 11,000 jobs and $115 billion in economic activity each year.

“Supporting this bill is supporting safer drinking water and more jobs,” Bush said. “It is absolutely critical we get this done now.”

The measure is assigned to the Senate Executive Committee.  

Category: Latest

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Springfield Office:
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Phone: (217) 782-7353

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Phone: (847) 548-5631