The information presented on these pages is for informational purposes only. Links to official documentation and information is provided where and when possible. Please consult local government authorities for current and accurate information.
In 2021, the Pennsylvania legislature introduced House Bill 1175 (HB 1175), which would cover doula services under Medicaid and create a doula registry and Advisory Board. The bills provides that certified doulas may be reimbursed for services provided to Medicaid recipients and the state registry will keep track of doulas who meet the requirements and therefore qualify for reimbursement. To qualify for reimbursement, HB 1175 requires a doula to have the following:
- Certified by National Certification Agency identified by the Department of Human Services (DHS)
- Additional training on care for special populations, becoming a Medicaid participating provider, and any additional topics the department may require.
- A background check including criminal federal and state criminal history and fingerprints.
- Personal liability insurance.
The purpose of the doula advisory board under HB 1175 is to determine the education requirements and approved agencies with through whom a doula may be certified. In addition, the advisory board would be responsible for setting the rate for reimbursement.
HB 1175 was referred to the Health Committee on April 14, 2021. No further action was taken.
How to Get Involved in the Lawmaking Process
Pennsylvania runs on a biennial cycle and will be wrapping up the 2021-2022 cycle soon. If you would like to get involved in advocating for similar legislation reach out to your legislator or Representative Cephas, the bills primary sponsor.
Department of Human Services Efforts
DHS has identified maternal health as a policy priority with a focus on doula services. This includes an effort to provide doula services to pregnant women who are incarcerated. In part, an effort to increase access to doulas has taken place in Pennsylvania DHS’s efforts to address Maternal Depression. The Pennsylvania Perinatal Quality Collaborative (PaPQC) is a partnership between DHS and other organizations (hospitals, health care payers, nonprofits, etc.) to improve care and quality of life for perinatal families. The PaPQC is participating in the national Moving on Maternal Depression (MOMD) Project which partners with states to improve maternal depression prevention, screening, and treatment.
The Doula Advisory Board was created under Pennsylvania’s MOMD program. It exists to establish education requirements and nationally recognized doula certifying agencies. This information is intended to be used to create a private sector registry of certified doulas and recommendations to improve financing doula services in Pennsylvania.
Wolf Administration Establishes Doula Care Pilot For Pregnant Incarcerated Women At SCI Muncy, DHS Pressroom (February 14, 2022)
Pennsylvania to pilot doula services program for pregnant women at state prison in Lycoming County, Philly Voice (February 15, 2022)
Links to official documentation and information is provided where and when possible. Please consult local government authorities for current and accurate information.