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May-27-2022 13:20printcomments

Oregon to Provide 12 Months of Continuous Postpartum Medical Coverage

Federal decision ‘critical to ensuring health and well-being of mothers and their babies’

newborn baby
Newborn baby getting weighed and measured after birth.
Photo by Bonnie King Salem-News.com

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - Oregon’s request to expand Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage, known as Oregon Health Plan (OHP), to one year postpartum has been approved by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

The change, approved and announced May 25th, will allow individuals to maintain continuous OHP coverage and access medically necessary physical, oral and behavioral health services for 12 months after childbirth.

The postpartum period is an important time for physical recovery; addressing pregnancy spacing and family planning needs; managing chronic conditions that may have been exacerbated during pregnancy; providing breastfeeding support; and ensuring mental health.

“Providing postpartum support and care is critical to ensuring the health and well-being of mothers and their babies,” states Interim State Medicaid Director Dana Hittle.

Currently, most states continue pregnancy-related Medicaid coverage for only 60 days after childbirth. The expansion of coverage was made possible by a new state plan opportunity included in the American Rescue Plan.

Medicaid covers 42% of births in the nation. A report published by the HHS Office of Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) highlights the inequity that rates in pregnancy-related deaths are two to three times higher among black non-Latino and American Indian/Alaska Native populations compared to white populations.

The report further explains that one in three pregnancy-related deaths occur between one week and one year after childbirth. The extension of coverage is aimed at advancing Oregon Health Authority’s (OHA) goal of eliminating health inequities by 2030.

Visit Medicaid.gov to learn more about the Medicaid and CHIP state plan amendment extensions of postpartum coverage in Oregon.

Source: Oregon Health Authority

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