Niki Kelly, writing for the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, reports that Indiana’s Medicaid program will no longer pay for early elective births. The rationale is that babies born early or small are at higher risk during their first year.
The Family and Social Services Administration – which oversees the low-income health program – said about 15 births a month might be affected.
Early elective births prior to 39 weeks’ gestation, such as planned inductions or C-sections, can still occur if the birth is eligible under a list of approved medical indications or occurs naturally.
Seems like I’m missing something in translation. Medically necessary early births are still covered. Seems odd that women would be choosing early elective births that were medically unnecessary. Maybe there is a grey zone where the mothers feel the early birth is necessary but Medicaid isn’t going to pay? In any event, the statement by the Medicaid Director seems to have an element of chest puffing that looks out of place in a purely medical discussion:
“This action sends a strong and clear message that we will not tolerate dangerous and unnecessary early childbirths, which puts our newborns at risk and increases costs in Medicaid,” said Joe Moser, Indiana Medicaid Director.
Maybe it’s an abortion thing?