July 13, 2021

Health insurance florsida has filed a lawsuit in federal court to demand the removal of a law requiring insurers to cover maternity and newborn care, an important step in the battle against the coronavirus pandemic. 

In a motion filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Miami, the Florida Hospital Association argues the law violates the First Amendment by making it difficult for insurers to offer maternity and infant care.

The Florida Hospital Act requires that companies cover both pregnancy and birth care for workers, including women, while also requiring that maternity care be covered at the same time as newborn care.

That law was passed in 2016 after the first pandemic, and its repeal was part of the effort to limit the spread of the virus.

The hospital association said in the motion that the law was a violation of Florida’s health care “first amendment” and is unconstitutional. 

“This law does not comply with the First or Second Amendments of the Constitution of the United States of America,” the association wrote. 

According to the lawsuit, the law requires that the state pay for maternity care that is paid for by the company. 

Florida has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the nation, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which suggests there is a significant shortage of maternity care.

A woman is treated at a hospital in Miami.

(AP/Joe Raedle) The lawsuit says that Florida has a financial obligation to provide maternity care, citing the state’s budget woes.

According to the hospital association, the state has a $2 billion deficit because of the shortage, which the association says has hurt Florida’s ability to pay its bills.

The group is asking the judge to order that the federal government reimburse the state for the cost of the additional maternity care and birth control coverage, which is estimated to cost $400 million.

The state has argued that the costs of covering maternity care would fall on the insurance companies that would cover the care. 

The lawsuit asks for an order that requires the state to provide the money for the additional coverage and that the court allow the state a chance to explain its reasoning. 

As of Tuesday, the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services had not yet provided a comment.

The Associated Press is not naming the hospital groups attorneys.