Did you know that if you or someone you love is a a medi-cal recipient, doula services are now covered as part of your maternity care? This is a relatively new benefit as of January 2023.
In the recent past, doula support has been primarily a middle-upper income luxury, due to the fact that moms and couples, must pay doulas out of pocket. Still, many families who wouldn't be considered "well off" in our culture, often hire doulas, working with payment plans and cutting other lower priority expenses. Even so, the fact remains, those with lower incomes often would not even consider hiring a doula as a feasible option. And for this reason, I celebrate that medi-cal is now offering coverage, and am happy to be a Medi-cal doula provider for Long Beach, South Bay, North OC, and parts of LA.
If you are a Medi-cal recipient looking for a doula in my area, please feel free to contact me. For those who may be reading this outside of my area, You can reach out to The Doula Network, a national network connecting families to doulas and vice versa.
If you are a doula looking for how to navigate being a new Medi-cal provider, you should also reach out The Doula Network. It is a totally free service, that helps manage the backend of medi-cal with all the various healthplans. It is run by doulas, to help doulas serve our under served populations. They connect you to potential clients in your area and handle your payments without taking a cut. They truly have been a Godsend. Even if you are still in the process or looking to begin the process of becoming a Medi-cal provider, they can help you with that as well.
I am happy for the progress that has been made in my last 5 years as a doula, seeing doula support become more widespread and accessible. Not only that, being an official Medi-cal healthcare provider, is a step toward ensuring doulas are considered part of the whole healthcare team, and not "visitors" at the hospital--an issue that was severely highlighted during COVID restictions.
The one thing that could improve in this department is the reimbursement rates for doulas. They are pretty low, so with that, I ask Medi-clients to donate what they can as they are able for my labor of love to be sustainable.
In any case, I am happy to serve medi-cal families and look forward to birth becoming a more empowered, positive experience across all spheres of experience and socio-economic position.