Minnesota Plan to Cover Unborn Children Receives Bush Admin. Approval

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 6, 2003   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Minnesota Plan to Cover Unborn Children Receives Bush Admin. Approval

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
August 6, 2003

St. Paul, MN (LifeNews.com) — The Bush administration has approved a request by the state of Minnesota to cover unborn children under the federal-state CHIP program that provides health insurance coverage for children in poor families.

The policy, announced last year, allow states to offer prenatal care to pregnant women and their unborn children by including the unborn child in the CHIP program. Pro-life groups applauded the policy saying it would provide additional resources poor women need to choose abortion alternatives.

"This is another step in the right direction in our efforts to foster a culture in which all human beings are respected and afforded the opportunity to grow, develop and live," Scott Fischbach told LifeNews.com.

Fischbach, the executive director of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life, added, "This move empowers women and their unborn children to have safeguards that enhance their health care. This is great progress on the part of the Bush and Pawlenty administrations as they build a culture that respects human life."

Minnesota becomes the fourth state to take advantage of the policy and it joins Illinois, Michigan and Rhode Island.

Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson approved Minnesota’s request.

"Prenatal care is crucial to the health of both mother and child, and this change will allow Minnesota to offer prenatal care to thousands of additional pregnant mothers and their unborn children," Secretary Thompson said. "Vital services during pregnancy can be a life-long determinant of health and we should do everything possible to make this care available to everyone."

The state expects to enroll more than 3,700 pregnant women under the plan.

Planned Parenthood and abortion advocates oppose the Bush policy because it gives unborn children further recognition under law and they say it is a first step to eliminating abortion.