The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) released a statement on April 7, 2022 requesting public comment for its draft waiver request to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to extend postpartum Medicaid coverage from 60 days to 90 days, as authorized by 2021 Wisconsin Act 58.
“Extending health care access during the postpartum period ensures critical continuity of care to help improve health outcomes for both the birthing person and baby,” said DHS Secretary-designee Karen Timberlake. “DHS strives for transparency in demonstration waivers and encourages individuals and organizations to share their feedback about this change with us.”
As perinatal professionals, your voice matters.
“Individuals with pregnancy-related Medicaid coverage typically lose their benefits 60 days after the end of pregnancy. Our nation’s rate of maternal mortality is rising, and a growing body of evidence shows that many of these deaths, particularly from preventable causes such as overdose and suicide, occur after pregnancy-related Medicaid coverage ends.” – ACOG Policy Priorities
DHS has invited interested parties to attend online public hearings to provide testimony on the postpartum coverage waiver on the following dates:
- Wednesday, April 13, 2022 from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
via Zoom or by phone at 844-708-2568 with webinar ID: 161 669 0151
- Wednesday, April 20, 2022 from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
via Zoom or by phone at 844-708-2568 with webinar ID: 161 054 7719
Can’t make either of the hearings? Submit your written comments on the proposed changes now through Friday, May 6, 2022. Written statements can be submitted via mail, fax, or email.
Don’t have time to draft a statement? We wrote one for you! WAPC members and supporters can feel free to cut and paste this verbiage in their written comments:
“I am writing to express my firm support for extending postpartum Medicaid coverage from the current coverage period of 60 days to 90 days postpartum. As a member the Wisconsin Association for Perinatal Care and a perinatal professional in Wisconsin, I have a duty to my patients to advocate for change which removes barriers to high quality perinatal care.
An astounding 73% of Wisconsin’s pregnancy-related deaths occurred up to one year postpartum, according to the most recent report from Wisconsin’s Maternal Mortality Review Team. Among deaths of birthing people enrolled in Medicaid at the time of their death, it is alarming and deeply troubling that 97% of these deaths were preventable. While we need to do much more to address this disparity, extending Medicaid coverage from 60 to 90 days postpartum is a step in the right direction for Wisconsin families.
As a perinatal professional in Wisconsin, I am proud to add my voice to the many healthcare providers urging you to vote to extend Medicaid coverage to at least 90 days postpartum.”
Department of Health Services
Division of Medicaid Services
Attn: Wisconsin 1115 Postpartum Coverage Waiver
PO Box 309
Madison, WI 53707-0309
Don’t have a fax machine? You can easily send free faxes via FaxZero.
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