CDF-Ohio Testifies in Support of HB 142 to Expand Access to Essential & Life-Saving Doula Care
December 6, 2022
Every year women in Ohio die preventable deaths due to complications in pregnancy or in the weeks and months after giving birth. Maternal deaths are even more stark among Black mothers who are three times as likely to die from pregnancy-related causes as their white counterparts. Ohio’s Pregnancy-Associated Mortality Review Panel (PAMR) published a report showing that between 2008-2016, over half the deaths of women who were pregnant or who died within one year of pregnancy were preventable.
Currently, in Ohio, doula care services are not directly reimbursable through Medicaid, but improving the accessibility of these services is direly needed as an evidence-based solution to improve these deplorable maternal and infant health indicators and address racial disparities in birth outcomes.
Today, CDF-Ohio’s Senior Health Policy Associate, Kelly Vyzral, testified in support of H.B. 142, which passed the Ohio House in June with near unanimous bipartisan support, and would provide Medicaid coverage for licensed doula services in Ohio and address cost-prohibitive barriers to doula care. The Ohio Senate must now pass this critical piece of legislation before the end of the year to help ensure access to appropriate health care services before, during, and after childbirth for pregnant people throughout Ohio.