Tag: Medicaid expansion
CMS letter addresses enrollment strategies for Medicaid and CHIP
Posted by Nikki Hurt on May 20, 2013
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a letter to state health officials and Medicaid Directors regarding enrollment of uninsured individuals into Medicaid and CHIP. With the looming enactment of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) provision on Medicaid expansion, CMS intends to assist states by providing optional tools that will aid in their transition to the new eligibility and enrollment models. The letter specifically addresses and provides guidance on these five enrollment strategies:
- Implementing the early adoption of Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI)-based rules;
- Extending the Medicaid renewal period so renewals that would otherwise occur during the first quarter of calendar year 2014 will occur later;
- Enrolling individuals into Medicaid based upon Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligibility;
- Enrolling parents into Medicaid based upon children’s income eligibility; and
- Adopting 12-month continued eligibility for parents and other adults.
CMS purports that states choosing to utilize one of these outlined approaches will be met with a streamlined review and approval process.
CBO releases new report describing budgetary impact of the ACA
Posted by Nikki Hurt on May 15, 2013
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO), in conjunction with the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT), issued updated budget projections for fiscal years 2014-2023, which include updated impact estimates of the insurance provisions in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Slower than anticipated growth in health care spending, particularly in programs such as Medicare and Medicaid, is one of several factors that influenced the revised estimates…
CMS releases DSH payment proposed rule
Posted by Nikki Hurt on May 14, 2013
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a proposed rule concerning reductions to Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) payments. Pursuant to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the federal government had intended to cut DSH payments beginning in 2014, as the law’s Medicaid expansion would negate the need for such payments. Since the Supreme Court’s decision rendered Medicaid expansion optional, the federal government has elected to delay the DSH payment reduction until 2015 when they have a more accurate assessment of the nation’s uncompensated care level after initial implementation of the ACA.
A fact sheet summarizing the rule can be found here.
Medicaid expansion allows for coordination between CMS and HRSA
Posted by Nikki Hurt on May 2, 2013
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) released a joint information bulletin detailing the opportunity to coordinate care between Medicaid and the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program. The expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will provide health care access to many people living with HIV/AIDS, therefore necessitating the need for CMS and HRSA to ensure that Medicaid and Ryan White HIV/AIDS programs are poised to collaborate and coordinate care for this population. The two federal agencies will offer webinars and training in the following areas: eligibility, enrollment, essential community providers, managed care practices, and integrated care models for those living with HIV/AIDS.
CMS offers higher reimbursement for Medicaid eligibility system update
Posted by Nikki Hurt on April 26, 2013
A provision in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) incentivized state Medicaid agencies to design and develop new eligibility systems by offering a 90% federal reimbursement for the associated costs. A set of FAQ released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) explains that state Medicaid programs will be eligible for an increased federal match rate of 75% for using and maintaining these upgraded eligibility system by January 1st, 2014. To qualify for the enhanced rate for the upgraded systems, states must meet operation and maintenance standards in the following categories:
- personnel costs
- software maintenance
- data entry
- computer operators
- coding clerks
States that choose not to expand their Medicaid program under the ACA will still be eligible for the increased reimbursement if they meet the specified upgrade requirements.
In addition to these stipulations, the FAQ also stated they would not authorize 1115 demonstration waivers that placed enrollment caps or periods of ineligibility for the new Medicaid-eligible adult groups under the ACA.
Tavenner answers Senate Finance Committee Questions
Posted by Nikki Hurt on April 25, 2013
On April 9th, the Senate Finance Committee held a confirmation hearing for Marilyn Tavenner to be the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Committee members submitted additional questions to Tavenner post-hearing on topics ranging from consumer outreach in state insurance Exchanges to pediatric dental services. Health Reform GPS has compiled a list of the Affordable Care Act related questions submitted by the Senate Finance Committee members. The list contains the name of the Senator asking the question, the question number, and the relevant ACA topic addressed.
State Health Reform Assistance Network releases Medicaid checklist
Posted by Nikki Hurt on April 16, 2013
The State Health Reform Assistance Network, in conjunction with the National Academy of State Health Policy and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, released a checklist detailing Medicaid requirements that each state must meet by 2014, irrespective of whether or not a state expands Medicaid eligibility as described in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). To accompany the outlined requirements and optional provisions detailed in the report, State Health Reform Assistance Network has also included a resource list with tools and analyses that can be incorporated to aid in Medicaid requirement implementation. The checklist is divided into five categories that should be altered in response to pending Medicaid changes, each of which containing various requirements to satisfy the specified category:
- Eligibility and Enrollment
- Medicaid Operations
- Medicaid Financing
- Medicaid Benefits
- Consumer Assistance
Update: Using Medicaid to Provide Premium Assistance for Exchange Coverage
Posted by Nikki Hurt on April 10, 2013
This update to our previous Implementation Brief on states’ option to implement Medicaid coverage by enrolling beneficiaries into Qualified Health Plans sold in Exchanges examines Frequently Answered Questions on Medicaid and Premium Assistance (“FAQ”), released on March 29th by CMS. The FAQ answer some, but not all, questions raised by this approach to implementation of the ACA Medicaid expansion…
Medicaid Expansions Using Private Plans: The Role of Premium Assistance and Cost-Sharing
Posted by Mark Dorley on April 8, 2013
The recent announcement that some states are considering expanding Medicaid using private health insurance through the health insurance exchanges has created a flurry of debate. HHS has said that it is willing to approve a concept submitted by Arkansas, using an approach called “premium assistance,” which lets Medicaid cover the cost of private insurance. The premium assistance option has been available for many years under the Medicaid statute, but linkage to the health insurance exchanges has only become possible with the ACA.
This brief commentary is a follow-up on earlier reports in Health Reform GPS discussing this topic; it focuses on the evidentiary basis that undergird some of these policy issues.
Study details state medical spending burden
Posted by Nikki Hurt on April 4, 2013
A new study released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Urban Institute describes the financial burden of medical spending on a state-by-state basis. Using this information, the study hones in on the number of individuals per state that experience high burdens from medical spending, yet currently are not eligible for Medicaid. The study found that Medicaid expansion, under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), has the potential to mitigate the financial burden from medical spending for several vulnerable populations in various regions across the country.