CMS extends annual postpartum Medicaid, CHIP coverage to 4 states

The Biden administration has approved four states—Florida, California, Oregon and Kentucky—to expand Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage to up to a year postpartum. 

The announcement on Wednesday brings the final number of states choosing to expand postpartum Medicaid coverage to seven overall.

“Today, more than 126,000 additional families will benefit from states extending Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program to 12 months of postpartum coverage,” Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said in a statement. 

Previously, Medicaid only covered postpartum care after 60 days, but the American Rescue Plan Act signed into law last year expanded it to one year for states that apply. 

In addition to the seven states that have gotten postpartum extension approval, several others such as Indiana and Pennsylvania have proposed similar extensions. 

“As a result of these efforts, as many as 720,000 pregnant and postpartum individuals across the United States, annually, could be guaranteed Medicaid and CHIP coverage for 12 months after pregnancy,” a release on the announcement said. 

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) officials said the state options are vital, as 42% of all births are covered by Medicaid. 

It is the latest agency action to address maternal health. CMS recently announced a new designation for “birthing friendly” hospitals that aims to certify hospitals that meet certain maternal health quality measures.