Births to Mothers with HUSKY Program and Medicaid Coverage: 2009

Back • Publication Date: December 22nd, 2011

Authors: Jake Siegel and Mary Alice Lee, Ph.D.

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A report on births to Connecticut mothers with HUSKY Program or Medicaid health coverage in 2009

This report on births to Connecticut mothers with HUSKY Program or Medicaid health coverage in 2009 finds:

  • Birth trends: The proportion of births covered by the HUSKY Program and fee for service (FFS) Medicaid continues to increase, from 26.8 percent in 2000 to 38.7 percent of all births in Connecticut in 2009.
  • Teen births: The number of births to teens 19 and under in the HUSKY Program has not shown the steady decline that is evident in data for the state as a whole (22% decline statewide since 2000) or the national trend (rate for teen 15-19 is the lowest it has ever been since 1940). Further, 84 percent of all teen births in Connecticut are to mothers with HUSKY Program or FFS Medicaid coverage.
  • Prenatal care: Mothers who had HUSKY Program or Medicaid coverage were not as likely as other mothers without publicly funded care to have had early prenatal care (prenatal care that began in the first trimester of pregnancy) (81.3% and 71.5% respectively, compared with 92.7% of other mothers). Since 2006, the early prenatal care rates for mothers with HUSKY Program or FFS Medicaid coverage have generally increased, albeit slowly.
  • Smoking during pregnancy: Since monitoring by coverage type began, the smoking rate among mothers with HUSKY Program coverage has declined steadily. However, the rate in 2009 (11.4%) is over seven times higher than the smoking rate for other mothers in Connecticut (1.6%). Babies born to mothers with HUSKY Program coverage who smoked were more likely to be born preterm or low birthweight than babies born to nonsmokers. Treatment of tobacco dependence was not covered in Connecticut’s HUSKY Program or FFS Medicaid in 2009, even for pregnant women.
  • Birth outcomes: The rates for preterm birth (less than 37 weeks gestation) for babies born to mothers with HUSKY Program (10.5%) or FFS Medicaid coverage (12.1%) were higher than the rate for births to other mothers (9.8%) in 2009. Rates for all groups in 2009 were lower than in 2008, but comparable to the rates in 2007. The low birthweight rates were higher for babies born to mothers with HUSKY Program (8.8%) and FFS Medicaid coverage (9.8%) than the rate for births to other mothers (7.3%).