Virginia Invests in Doulas to Improve Maternal Health Outcomes
The United States is facing a maternal health crisis, as maternal mortality rates continue to rise with significant racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic disparities in birth outcomes. Nationally, there has been a growing interest in expanding the maternal health workforce with an investment in doulas–trained professionals who provide continuous physical, emotional, and informational support to pregnant people before, during, and shortly after childbirth. In January 2022, Virginia became the latest state to cover doula services through its Medicaid program. The National Academy for State Health Policy released a new blog post detailing Virginia’s doula benefits, including their reimbursement structure. Community doulas can begin enrolling in the state’s Medicaid program this spring.