Opinion: Expand State Medicaid Coverage for Doulas

Publication date 
January 24, 2019

An editorial piece written by Renee Mehra and co-authors, “Recommendations for the Pilot Expansion of Medicaid Coverage for Doulas in New York State,” makes a case for states to expand Medicaid funding for doulas (trained non-medical people who provide support for pregnant women   ̶   pre-birth, during birth and post-birth) with the goal of reducing maternal mortality rates. At present only two states, Oregon and Minnesota, have expanded Medicaid coverage for doula services. Based on the lessons learned from these states and on their own research, Mehra et al. set forth recommendations to increase doula reimbursements and visits, increase funding to train and certify a diverse doula workforce, and expand the role of doulas.  In the American Journal of Public Health. In the American Journal of Public Health.

Renee Mehra is a doctoral candidate in the department of Chronic Disease Epidemiology at Yale School of Public Health. In 2017 - 2018, she was an ISPS Graduate Policy Fellow.

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