June 10, 2009

Legislative Action Alert: Medicaid Birth Center Reimbursement Act

Just a quick reminder that H.R.2358, a bill to amend title XIX of the Social Security Act to require Medicaid coverage for freestanding birth center services, has been introduced in the House. The American Association of Birth Centers explains that “it is critical that we remember that until this bill is passed, payment for birth centers and access to care are at risk, subject to the whim of your state politicians and administration staff,” and has compiled the following suggestions for taking action in support of the legislation:

1) CALL YOUR U.S. REPRESENTATIVES

  • Ask them to co-sponsor and/or support H.R. 2358. Call again with the bill number even if you called before.
  • Make a point to call all of the Representatives in your service area. If your Representatives are on the House Energy & Commerce Committee it is especially important for you to call them.
  • Tell them it is urgent that we pass the Medicaid Birth Center Reimbursement Act so women will continue to have access to prenatal care and other care in birth centers. Focus on the needs of women and babies for access to high quality care as the goal of this legislation. Download “Pregnant Women’s Access to Care Threatened” [PDF] for some talking points.
  • Click here to find your Representative and his/her contact information.

2) CALL YOUR U.S. SENATORS

  • Ask them to sponsor and introduce a Senate version of H.R. 2358. This bill is a permanent solution to the payment crisis.
  • Click here to find your Senators and their contact information.

Remember, PHONE CALLS are more effective than emails.

3) Continue to collect signatures for the Physician Letter.

We must show broad, nationwide support from physicians.

For additional information on the need for this legislation, see OBOS’s Judy Norsigian’s recent statement on the issue, as well as these other previous posts.


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