Health and Human Services

Medicaid prenatal program expanded, advanced to final round

A bill that seeks to provide support to low-income Nebraska mothers who are at risk for adverse birth outcomes was expanded to include coverage of continuous glucose monitors and advanced from select file March 7.

Sen. George Dungan
Sen. George Dungan

LB857, sponsored by Lincoln Sen. George Dungan, would create the Nebraska Prenatal Plus Program to cover the cost of prenatal services for at-risk mothers, including nutritional counseling, psychosocial counseling and support, general client education and health promotion, breastfeeding support and targeted case management.

The bill defines an at-risk mother as a woman who is eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program who is pregnant and determined by a health care provider to be at risk of having a negative maternal or infant health outcome.

The bill was amended on general file to include a sunset date of June 30, 2028.

Lincoln Sen. Carolyn Bosn offered an amendment on select file to add provisions of her LB933, which would broaden Medicaid coverage for continuous glucose monitors — devices that read blood sugar levels and provide real-time data every five minutes.

Current Nebraska Medicaid regulations cover CGMs only for individuals receiving intensive insulin therapy, which is defined as three or more injections per day or the use of an insulin pump. The amendment, adopted 32-0, would expand Nebraska Medicaid coverage for CGMs to individuals with gestational diabetes and include coverage for Medicaid recipients receiving any type of insulin therapy.

Bosn said the use of CGMs during pregnancy has been found to reduce the risk of hypoglycemia, preeclampsia, Cesarean section births, neonatal intensive care unit stays and stillbirths.

“Continuous glucose monitors … are lifesaving devices for individuals with diabetes,” Bosn said.

Dungan supported the amendment, saying the addition of LB933 to the Prenatal Plus Program would help achieve the state’s goal of “healthy moms and healthy babies.”

The amendment would cap funding for CGM coverage at $600,000 annually from the Medicaid Managed Care Excess Profit Fund.

Following adoption of the Bosn amendment, senators advanced LB857 to final reading by voice vote.

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