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Whoa, Momma!

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Tracey Henry and Suzannah DiMarzio

Health care bill has perks for adoption, breastfeeding moms



We've been inundated with stories on the health care bill that President Obama signed into law (and here's a good explainer from our friends at Politifact), but some little-known facets of it are getting attention from mom bloggers.

Workplaces will have to provide “reasonable” break time and a private location — other than a bathroom — for breastfeeding mothers to pump breast milk for one year after the birth of a child. If the company has less than 50 employees they can opt out if they show it causes undue hardship. This is something working mothers have long fought for

Postpartum depression will get more attention with expanded funding, worker training, public education and research.

Beginning in 2010, the federal adoption credit goes up by $1,000 to $13,170 per child and now becomes refundable. Advocates for better adoption policies are thrilled, though even this blogger said she's not sure what this has to do with health care. 

Remember how we reported on the federal funding for abstinence-only education getting cut? Well, the sex-ed class that tells students to wait until marriage is back. There has been mounting criticism on the effectiveness of this kind of teaching, but the health care bill allocates $250 million over the next five years. There's still some question over what kind of sex-ed program we are talking about. A University of Pennsylvania researcher reported earlier this year that a carefully designed, morally neutral abstinence-focused approach can work, and that the kids who did end up having sex were more likely to use birth control and protection. So stay tuned on how this one shakes out.

-- Sharon Kennedy Wynne

[Last modified: Thursday, May 13, 2010 11:05am]


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