Suit Seeks To Overturn Residency Requirement for Pre-, Post-Natal Care
On Thursday, Maternal and Child Health Access, a not-for-profit advocacy group, filed a lawsuit challenging a California law that requires women to be state residents for six months to qualify for health care services during pregnancies and immediately following childbirth, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
The lawsuit, filed in San Francisco Superior Court, charges that the 1991 law discriminates against new residents and violates U.S. constitutional provisions that guarantee the right to travel between states.
The program is open to women who are ineligible for Medi-Cal but whose incomes do not exceed 300% of the federal poverty level. Under the law, uninsured women who meet the income and residency requirements are eligible for medical services during their pregnancies and for 60 days after giving birth.
In October 2007, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) vetoed a bill that would have eliminated the residency requirement. Schwarzenegger said the bill would have cost the state more than $1 million annually (Egelko, San Francisco Chronicle, 4/27).