Feb 20, 2024 - Health

Iowa's postpartum holdout status

Illustration of a stork carrying a red cross

Illustration: Natalie Peeples/Axios

Iowa is one of four states that has yet to provide a full year of postpartum care for Medicaid recipients under the Affordable Care Act, Axios' Maya Goldman reports.

Why it matters: The U.S. is experiencing a maternal health crisis, especially affecting those who live in rural areas, Black women and mothers who are older.

Catch up fast: States are required to provide pregnancy-related Medicaid coverage for 60 days postpartum.

  • While they've long had the option to seek federal approval for longer coverage windows, Congress passed a law in 2021 making it easier for states to extend postpartum eligibility to 12 months.
  • Arkansas, Idaho and Wisconsin are the only other states that have not extended the care.

Of note: The policy is seen as a key strategy for efforts to reduce maternal mortality.

What they're saying: Gov. Kim Reynolds is calling for lawmakers to extend coverage with a bill advancing in the Legislature with bipartisan support, Iowa Public Radio reports.

  • "Building a robust culture of life means supporting mothers and growing families who are struggling to make ends meet," Reynolds said in a statement to Axios.

Of note: The Senate approved the bill Monday.

  • Yes, but: The latest version would further restrict eligibility to families based on income, which some Democrats oppose.

Read the full story

avatar

Subscribe for more Axios Des Moines in your inbox.

Read the full edition
🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Des Moines stories

No stories could be found

Des Moinespostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Des Moines.

🌱

Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more