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Speaker Philip Gunn won’t stand in way of postpartum Medicaid extension

Photo by SuperTalk Mississippi News

After a long history as an outspoken critic of extending postpartum Medicaid, House Speaker Philip Gunn has indicated that he will not stand in the way of a bill that would do just that.

SuperTalk Mississippi News spoke with a member of Gunn’s staff Monday afternoon, and they confirmed that while the speaker still has concerns regarding the extension of postpartum benefits, he will not block Senate Bill 2212 from moving through the legislative process.

Gunn’s decision comes after Medicaid Director Drew Snyder wrote a letter to him, explaining that more Medicaid-financed births are expected in a “post-Dobbs world.”

“In light of these unique circumstances, adopting a one-year duration for postpartum pregnant women as set out in Senate Bill 2212 is a suitable approach for Mississippi. It is also consistent with the approach followed by similarly situated Medicaid programs in our region such as Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, and Tennessee,” a portion of the letter reads. “I would also note that establishing a 12-month coverage duration for already eligible Medicaid moms is different than expanding Medicaid to newly eligible adults under the Affordable Care Act.”

SB 2212, which would expand postpartum Medicaid from 60 days to 12 months, is expected to be taken up and passed in committee Tuesday before the deadline to do so. Lawmakers will then have until March 9 to vote on the bill. If passed on the floor, Gov. Tate Reeves has vowed to sign the legislation into law.

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