Maternity Coverage

Published: | Updated: March 29, 2018

Definition - What does Maternity Coverage mean?

Maternity coverage is health insurance coverage for costs associated with pregnancy, childbirth, and the care of a newborn. It is included either in personal health insurance policies or commercial group benefits.

Under the Affordable Care Act, maternity coverage became one of the 10 mandatory coverages that all health insurance providers must offer.

Insuranceopedia explains Maternity Coverage

Maternity coverage will cover, among other things:

  • Prenatal medical care
  • Prenatal and maternal screening for certain conditions
  • Medications related to pregnancy
  • Delivery
  • Post-partum hospitalization
  • Lactation consultations and other forms of newborn care

Prior to the Affordable Care Act, only 12% of health insurance policies provided maternity coverage. And in some cases, it was only available to policyholders through a rider added to their basic health insurance.

While pregnancy was formerly treated as a pre-existing condition by health insurers (and hence excluded from coverage), it is now covered even if the policy was purchased while the insured is pregnant.

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