Tester to HHS: Allow uninsured pregnant women to enroll in insurance marketplaces

Senator says maternity care is critical care

(U.S. Senate) – Senator Jon Tester is calling on the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to allow uninsured pregnant women to enroll in private health insurance throughout the year.

Tester, in a letter to HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, said that all women should have access to comprehensive, affordable health insurance, including maternity care.

The Senator asked Secretary Burwell to allow pregnant women to enroll in the health insurance marketplace outside of the three-month Open Enrollment Period. Currently, events like marriage or the loss of a job qualify individuals for special enrollment, but pregnancy is not one of those events.

“The ACA has made historic progress towards ending discrimination against women in the health insurance market,” Tester wrote. “However, without access to maternity care coverage, these women are forced to either forgo this critical care or face significant out of pocket costs.”

Tester recently sponsored legislation to expand reproductive health services for women serving in the military.

Tester’s letter to HHS Secretary Burwell is available online HERE.