Health care law concerns Ohio churches group

CINCINNATI (AP) — An Ohio religion group that includes both Protestant and Catholic churches has expressed concerns about religious liberty protections under President Barack Obama’s health care plan.

The Ohio Council of Churches representing 18 Christian denominations says in a statement that more efforts are needed to broaden the religious exemption in the plan’s current mandate and propose and add safeguards for “religious liberty and the rights of conscience.”

The statement says the group doesn’t oppose most of the Affordable Care Act and hopes that it leads to expanded access to health care. But the group states concerns about the definition of a religious institution, and impact on religious charities, hospitals and universities.

The Department of Health and Human Services has made revisions on contraception coverage that Roman Catholic leaders say aren’t sufficient.

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