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Breast milk contains important nutrients, immune-system antibodies and growth factors that all contribute to a baby’s health, particularly babies who are vulnerable because they are premature or underweight. But a number of circumstances — including maternal illness, death, surgery, use of drugs or medications, and certain chronic conditions — can prevent a mother from being able to breastfeed.
One potential alternative for some babies, then, is the use of human donor milk. Indiana, Iowa, Michigan and Ohio are among the states with nonprofit human-milk banks that have been certified by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America. (The association’s certification standards were established with input from the federal government and the blood and tissue industries.)

This act revises the education and orientation requirements for birth centers and their families to incorporate safe sleep practices and causes of Sudden Unexpected Infant Death. It also makes legislative findings with respect to the sudden unexpected death of an infant under a specified age, as well as defines the term “Sudden Unexpected Infant Death”, and includes other provisions relating to training requirements for first responders and health professionals.

This act expands Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act through the “private option” of policies offered on the state Health Insurance Exchange. The act allows low-income individuals to buy private insurance with Medicaid funding.

This act establishes a state temporary disability insurance program to provide benefits to workers who take time off for a seriously ill child, spouse, parent, parent-in-law, grandparent, domestic partner or to bond with a new child. Temporary caregiver benefits for an individual shall be limited to a maximum of four weeks in a benefit year and no individual shall be paid temporary caregiver benefits and temporary disability benefits which together exceed 30 times his or her weekly benefit rate in any benefit year.

On Tuesday, California voters defeated Proposition 46 with a 67.2 percent majority.  Proposition 46 would have required drug and alcohol testing of doctors, reporting of positive tests to the California Medical Board, and an increase in medical malpractice caps. 

California voters rejected by a nearly 60 percent majority Proposition 45 that would have required the state insurance commissioner to approve proposed increases in health insurance rates for small groups and individuals.

On Nov. 4, 2014, South Dakota voters approved Initiated Measure 17 that would require health insurers to allow patients to choose any legitimate medical provider. The measure was approved by 62 percent of those casting a vote.

The question, to allow “any willing provider,” seemed simple on its face – a matter of allowing patients to choose their doctors and hospitals rather than force a selection from a list of in-network providers.  Any provider could join a health insurance company’s network, assuming that they agree to the company’s terms (such as reimbursement levels) and that they work within the geographic coverage area.

On Election Day, South Dakota voters will vote on Initiated Measure 17 that would require health insurers to allow patients to choose any legitimate medical provider.

The question, to allow “any willing provider,” seems simple on its face – a matter of allowing patients to choose their doctors and hospitals rather than force a selection from a list of in-network providers.  Any provider could join a health insurance company’s network, assuming that they agree to the company’s terms (such as reimbursement levels) and that they work within the geographic coverage area.

State Medicaid programs are large and complex and their directors are faced with implementing changes required by the Affordable Care Act at the same time they continue to work with limited resources, both fiscal and human. Medicaid programs are also leading by example in major transformations of the health care system, including payment reforms, quality oversight, system accountability, and targeted care coordination.

Since 1997, states have been able to bill for Medicaid-enrolled inmates who leave prisons or jails longer than 24 hours for health treatment in a hospital or nursing facility. That provision is an important but little-known exception to the federal prohibition on spending Medicaid funds for health services to inmates of state prisons and local jails, according to Dr. Nicole Jarrett, who spoke at September’s CSG Medicaid Leadership Policy Academy.

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