APTA-Supported Bill Promoting Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy in Medicaid Returns
APTA and APTA Pelvic Health never let up on advocacy, and now that persistence is paying off: The combined efforts have paved the way for the return of a bipartisan bill in the U.S. House of Representatives that would boost the role of postpartum health — including the role of pelvic health physical therapy — for individuals under Medicaid.
Known as the Optimizing Postpartum Outcomes Act (H.R. 2480), the bill directs the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to develop several provisions that would significantly strengthen Medicaid's emphasis on pelvic care for mothers in the postpartum period, which the bill defines as the period of lactation or six months from the last day of pregnancy, whichever is later. The bill is co-sponsored by Reps. Don Bacon, R-Neb., Lisa Blunt Rochester, D-Del., Terri Sewell, D-Ala., Jenniffer González-Colón, R-Puerto Rico, Susan Wild, D-Pa., and Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa.
As it did in its 2022 incarnation, the legislation includes pelvic floor physical therapy among the services that would be covered under Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program. The bill also instructs the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to develop and issue guidance on best practices, financing options, screenings, referrals, and access, as well as terminology and diagnostic codes. Additionally, if the law passes, HHS would be required to educate and train health professionals and postpartum women on the importance of pelvic health and pelvic health physical therapy.