Senior Policy Analyst
Federal policymakers should consider a more practical gift than flowers or chocolate this Mother’s Day: they should support women’s health coverage by rejecting the House bill that repeals the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and cuts $839 billion from Medicaid, reducing enrollment by 14 million.
The American Health Care Act, which the House passed last week, deeply cuts Medicaid and effectively eliminates the ACA’s Medicaid expansion, while rolling back protections for women with private insurance. It would have devastating consequences for millions of women, including the nearly 40 million women who rely on Medicaid. Our new paper, with state-specific data, shows how Medicaid works for women and how the House bill would impair women’s coverage.
While the bill’s Medicaid changes would jeopardize care for all beneficiaries, they would disproportionately affect women — not only because a higher share of women than men rely on Medicaid, but also because of the specific services at risk. Medicaid provides health care for nearly half of all pregnant women, supporting them through their pregnancies and ensuring that their babies have a healthy start. It’s also the single largest payer of publicly funded family planning services, and it provides long-term services and supports to millions of older women and women with disabilities, which in many cases allow them to stay in their homes instead of an institution.
For women with Medicaid coverage, the House-passed bill would:
For women with private insurance, the House bill would:
The House bill would put health care out of reach for millions of women. It’s now with the Senate, which should use Mother’s Day to improve, rather than restrict, women’s access to essential care.