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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Kelly Morrison (DFL)

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House Preventive Health Policy Division advances legislation requiring health plans to cover contraceptives, extending Medical Assistance for new mothers

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

St. Paul, MN - Today, the House Preventive Health Policy Division heard two bills authored by Rep. Kelly Morrison (DFL - Deephaven). HF 520 would require health plans to cover contraceptives, and HF 521 would extend Medical Assistance (MA) availability for new mothers to a full year. The committee, chaired by Rep. Mike Freiberg (DFL - Golden Valley), advanced both pieces of legislation. 

“All Minnesotans deserve access to the care they need,” said Rep. Morrison, a practicing obstetrician-gynecologist. “The legislation brought forward today improves access to critical care for new mothers and babies across Minnesota and protects the right of Minnesotans to have access to affordable contraception. We can ensure healthier and stronger communities when all Minnesotans have the opportunity to thrive.”

The Protect Access to Contraceptives Act, HF 520, requires health plans to cover contraceptives and contraceptive services with no cost-sharing requirements. Health plans, medical assistance, and MinnesotaCare would cover up to 12 months of prescription contraceptives. HF 521 expands MA eligibility for pregnant women from 60 to 365 days postpartum, and directs the commissioner of Human Services to seek necessary federal waivers and approval.

“Minnesota’s families are stronger when they receive the care and the tools they need,” said Rep. Freiberg. “Family planning is shown to promote healthy babies and mothers – mothers whose health is further improved by proper access to health care in the year after giving birth. When we empower women with the control and care they deserve, that leads to a healthier Minnesota.”

Both bills were advanced to the House Health Finance and Policy Committee. HF 520 advanced on a party-line vote of 7-4, and HF 521 advanced with unanimous support. More information and supporting materials are available on the committee’s webpage. Video recording of today’s hearing will be made available on the House Public Information YouTube channel