More good, family-friendly news out of Sacramento: Governor Jerry Brown today signed four pieces of legislation designed to benefit pregnant women and new mothers in California. A recent Los Angeles Times article described the importance of one of the bills, which mandates maternity coverage for women who are self-employed or not covered by work insurance policies:
Although HMOs and employer-based insurance policies in California are required to include maternity care, individual policies are not. That leaves women who are self-employed or not covered at work with few options, including paying out of pocket for pregnancy and childbirth costs.
Pregnancy care and delivery costs can run tens of thousands of dollars, with taxpayers often picking up the tab for those without insurance coverage. The proposed legislation would help reduce public outlays, according to the bill's sponsor, Sen. Noreen Evans (D-Santa Rosa). "It saves the state money because those women now are turning toward state-supported healthcare because they can't find their own healthcare," she said.