Noteworthy News

Archive for July, 2012


To Expand or Not to Expand: The Medicaid Question States are Asking

Now that the Supreme Court has ruled that states are not required to expand their Medicaid programs as called for in the Affordable Care Act, governors and state legislatures across the country are trying to figure out if they will move ahead with the Medicaid expansion when that planned expansion begins in 2014. So far, nine governors have said they will not expand their Medicaid programs and another six have said they are seriously considering doing the same.  About a dozen more governors have said they expect their state to go ahead and extend Medicaid benefits to more people under [&hellip

Sebelius to States: Don’t Slash Medicaid Eligibility

The Supreme Court decision that ruled the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion mandate only optional for states does not free states of the reform law’s other requirements – including its maintenance-of-effort requirement for Medicaid eligibility criteria, which does not expire until 2014. This was the message Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius conveyed in a letter to the nation’s governors amid published reports that some states had already begun planning immediate cutbacks in Medicaid eligibility. Sebelius also revealed that in states that choose not to expand Medicaid eligibility, the federal government is prepared to waive the mandatory health insurance [&hellip

Did Court Green-Light Immediate Medicaid Cutbacks?

While the Supreme Court decision in the challenge to the Affordable Care Act overruled the reform law’s requirement that states expand Medicaid eligibility, some states have concluded that the court’s decision also releases them from the law’s maintenance-of-effort requirement that prohibits them from tightening Medicaid eligibility standards before 2014. As a result, a number of states, including Maine, Wisconsin, Alabama, New Jersey, and Indiana, are already considering whether to reduce their Medicaid rolls in the very near future by raising the program’s eligibility standards. As the primary providers of care to the Medicaid population in the communities they serve, urban [&hellip

NAUH Asks Congress for Help

NAUH has asked all members of Congress to sign onto a letter circulating among their colleagues that urges Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to delay implementation of Medicare’s new hospital readmissions reduction program until she can re-examine that program’s potentially unfair and damaging impact on private urban safety-net hospitals.  Read NAUH’s message to Congress about this issue here

Implications of States Opting Out for Low-Income Families

With the Supreme Court’s decision in the Affordable Care Act challenge case giving states the choice of whether to participate in the reform law’s significant expansion of Medicaid eligibility, many low-income people will need to wait a while longer to see what their state decides to do. The implications are considerable:  while some low-income families will be eligible for insurance subsidies if their state does not expand Medicaid eligibility, some of those families will not be eligible for such subsidies and still will not qualify for Medicaid. Because they care for so many low-income patients who currently are uninsured, urban [&hellip

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