Another bill on Baker’s desk would require the state Medicaid program MassHealth to cover postpartum women who are eligible for MassHealth for a year after childbirth, regardless of any change in the family’s income. Previously, MassHealth only extended postpartum coverage for 60 days. The state already adopted the 12-month coverage policy in April 2022 under flexibility granted by a federal COVID recovery law, but enshrining it into law would ensure that MassHealth continues offering that coverage permanently.

The consumer advocacy group Health Care for All said the bill will contribute to efforts to address maternal health disparities, in which Black women are three times more likely than White women to die of pregnancy-related causes. The bill is a vital step “as the maternal mortality crisis continues to grow,” said Yaminah Romulus, policy manager at Health Care for All.

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