MMHLA authored a letter, in partnership with sister organizations 2020 Mom and Postpartum Support International, encouraging the United States Senate to enact legislation to extend pregnancy-related Medicaid coverage for a full year postpartum. The letter had over 100 co-signers.
Currently Medicaid covers 50% of births in the United States with mandated coverage for new mothers ending at 60 days postpartum. At this point, it is up to each individual state to decide eligibility for continuing coverage; as a result, many new mothers become uninsured at a medically-vulnerable time in their lives. Almost 25% of maternal deaths occur after 42 days postpartum, and the peak incidence of maternal mental health conditions such as postpartum depression and suicide are 6-9 months postpartum.
Recognizing the need to provide insurance coverage to new mothers, the House of Representatives pass H.R. 4996 (Helping MOMS Act) in September. This letter encourages the Senate to pass this legislation before the end of this Congress.