House Committee Hears Bill to Extend Medicaid Coverage for New Mothers

Rep. Toni Rose of Dallas is the author of this legislation

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Representative Toni Rose (D-Dallas) has filed House Bill 12, to extend Medicaid coverage for new mothers.

“One thing I know that we should do is make sure that we protect the lives of Texas women,” said Rep. Rose.

The House Health Care Reform Select Committee heard the bill Thursday.

The bill extends health care coverage to a full year, for new mothers on Medicaid. Before the pandemic, that coverage lasted two months. Right now, Medicaid Benefits have been extended because of the pandemic, but that ends later this spring. 

Rep. Rose wants to make sure the extended coverage continues for new mothers. Several witnesses testified in favor of the bill. Diana Forester, the Director of Health Policy for Texans Care for Children, says she has heard from women about extended coverage.

"The thing that keeps coming up is the extended care has allowed me to take care of myself, it has allowed me to get better so I can be there for my family, and go back to work,” Forester said.

“My son is a one-year-old. If I didn't have that extension of Medicaid, I don't know what I would have done,” said another witness.

The bill has been deemed a priority by House Speaker Dade Phelan (R-Beaumont), who said in a statement,

"As I have said before, it is essential that the Texas House makes meaningful progress this year on better supporting mothers and children in the state - and that starts with extending health coverage for new moms to a full year."

The committee on health care reform will decide whether to send this bill, to the full floor.

Right now, Parkland Health has developed its own program, to extend coverage for up to twelve months for some of its patients.

They say this bill would enable them to expand it to more patients.

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