A provision in the American Rescue Plan Act makes extending postpartum Medicaid coverage easier. States no longer need to apply for a waiver and this is due to:
- High U.S. maternal mortality rates. The U.S. had the highest overall maternal mortality rate, by far, among wealthy nations in 2020, at 23.8 deaths per 100,000 births. A third of these deaths happen in the first year.
- The expectation that more women will need postpartum care as the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision is limiting abortions.
In spite of cost, an interim legislative committee voted 6-5 in August to introduce a bill in 2023. An LSO investigation estimates that the extension would impact 1250 new mothers in WY.
MT has considered extending postpartum care estimating a cost of $9.2 million in federal and state funding over the next two years, with the federal government covering nearly 70%. MT officials estimate this will impact 1000 MT women while the federal government estimates 2000. Missouri and Missippi both ban abortion but expect to revisit postpartum care this session. MT’s governor has included money for the state portion in his budget.