Feminist of Color Organization

The latest from the blog:

Today, Louisiana legislators will review proposed regulations by the Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) that could severely limit freestanding birth centers and the practice of midwifery in Louisiana.  As with most restrictions of holistic and women-centered health care, these limitations will disproportionately affect Black women, women of color, and poor women in our state.

The stated purpose of the DHH proposal is to extend Medicaid reimbursement to birth centers. While Medicaid reimbursement for birth centers is a measure we enthusiastically support, this legislation would also place severe restrictions on the types of birth centers covered and on who can practice within them. First, the proposal excludes Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs). If the measure passes as written, CPMs would not only be ineligible to receive Medicaid reimbursement for their work in birth centers, they would also be restricted from serving any Medicaid-eligible patients, even if the center or the patient were to cover the full cost. This restriction would exacerbate the barriers to access to birth services for Medicaid-eligible clients, in a context where access is already the worst in the country.  It would also place severe limitations on the practice of midwifery in our state by hampering professional access for CPMs, who are trained, certified practitioners with knowledge that is greatly of need to their communities.

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