The postpartum stage (after delivery) is an important period of time both for the parent who carried the child and newborn baby. Parents can face a variety of health challenges postpartum including depression, anxiety, pain, and any other complication that may have taken place during childbirth. Medicaid coverage is a way for parents to receive financial support as it relates to their pregnancy and the postpartum period. However, coverage gaps can leave many people in need of support during a very vulnerable time of their lives. While states provide pregnant people with Medicaid benefits, only some states extend eligibility beyond the nationally mandated 60 days postpartum.
The data source organized states into categories describing the current status of state efforts to extend Medicaid coverage to pregnant people beyond 60 days postpartum as of 2021. Those categories included “enacted” if the state passed a bill and/or had money included in the state budget but was not yet implementing the policy and “implemented” if the state was currently providing some form of extended postpartum coverage.
For the specific categorization and coding, if a bill was introduced but not enacted it was categorized as a 0. If the bill was enacted or implemented, it was categorized as a 1 if any health or population restrictions were listed, or as a 2 if the bill was serving all pregnant people for at least one year.
Ranji, U., Gomez, I., & Salganicoff, A. (2019). Expanding postpartum Medicaid coverage. Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Issue Brief. https://firstfocus.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/Issue-Brief-Expanding-Postpartum-Medicaid-Coverage.pdf
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. (2021). Policy priorities: Extend postpartum Medicaid coverage. https://www.acog.org/advocacy/policy-priorities/extend-postpartum-medicaid-coverage