Currently the White House is proposing cuts to the Medicaid program. As a result, women of color, their families and communities will be severely impacted. Medicaid allows women access to a variety of health care services. Between family planning, preventative care and maternity care, Medicaid plays a significant role in women’s health services. In 2015, Medicaid covered more than 12.9 million women ages 15-44. With 31% of African American women, ages 15-41, currently enrolled in Medicaid, the need for stable healthcare is non-negotiable. On the contrary, legislation intends to cut Medicaid funding by 839 million dollars in a ten-year span. This cut would eliminate Medicaid expansion and cause thousands of low-income women of color to lose healthcare access. In addition, organizations such as Planned Parenthood would be barred from state reimbursement for family planning and preventative care services. This bill would impose ridiculous work requirements that will deprive more than 7 million women of vital health care. Since Medicaid expanded to include more women of color and low-income families, there has been a significant decrease in unintended pregnancies as well as diseases and life-threatening conditions. States have a considerable amount of flexibility regarding which family planning services to cover financially. Revoking this accessibility will especially put women at an increased risk for health issues and cause mistrust between the affected communities and law makers.
Everyone in this country has a right to quality health care and should not have to jump through hurdles to attain it. It is unfair that women, who are already struggling, will have to bear the burden of losing that right.