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Rep. Marilyn Lands introduces bipartisan maternal healthcare legislation

In Alabama, many women struggle to enroll in Medicaid and are unable to access healthcare when they first discover they are pregnant.

Rep. Marilyn Lands
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Rep. Marilyn Lands on Tuesday introduced bipartisan legislation to expand healthcare access for pregnant women. The bill, HB494, the Maternal Healthcare Access Act, would extend presumptive Medicaid eligibility to pregnant women in Alabama. 

In Alabama, many women struggle to enroll in Medicaid and are unable to access healthcare when they first discover they are pregnant. Rather than delay needed healthcare until their Medicaid application is approved, the bill extends presumptive coverage. Similar legislation was enacted in Mississippi in March. 

The legislation is Rep. Lands’ first bill and has strong bipartisan support. She is the Alabama State House’s newest member, after winning a special election March 26.

In a statement, Rep. Lands described the importance of the bill, “The Maternal Healthcare Access Act will save lives by helping women access care in the first trimester of pregnancy. This legislation is urgently needed to address Alabama’s maternal mortality crisis.”

Lands spoke publicly about the bill Wednesday at the State House Democratic Caucus Press Conference in Montgomery.

Reps. Rafferty, Ensler, Gray, Drummond, DuBose, Collins, Hulsey, Shaver, Daniels, Hollis, McClammy, Hall, Clarke, and McCampbell have also co-sponsored the legislation. A copy of the bill text is attached.

The Alabama Political Reporter is a daily political news site devoted to Alabama politics. We provide accurate, reliable coverage of policy, elections and government.

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