Noteworthy News

Archive for October, 2018

 

MACPAC: Let’s “hit the pause button” on Medicaid Work Requirements

The non-partisan legislative branch agency that advises Congress and the administration on Medicaid issues will ask the administration to delay approving any more state Medicaid work requirements. That was the decision reached by the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission when it met last week. MACPAC warned that the work requirement currently being implemented in Arkansas, the first state to introduce such a requirement, is flawed and needs further work before moving forward.  The agency also believes the federal government should increase its oversight of new Medicaid work requirements before additional states begin implementing similar, already-approved Medicaid work requirements. [&hellip

MACPAC Meets

The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission met for two days last week in Washington, D.C. The following is MACPAC’s own summary of the sessions. The October 2018 MACPAC meeting covered a range of front-line issues in Medicaid, leading off with an analysis of disproportionate share hospital (DSH) allotments on Thursday morning. Following the analysis, the Commission discussed options for March recommendations on how to structure DSH allotment reductions that are scheduled to begin in fiscal year 2020. The Commission later resumed the discussion it began in September on work and community engagement requirements, presenting new data from Arkansas [&hellip

HHS Seeks Feedback on Social Determinants of Health

Following up on a requirement from the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Transformation (IMPACT) Act of 2014, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued a request for information seeking feedback from providers and insurers about what they do to improve health outcomes for Medicare beneficiaries with social risk factors. The RFI seeks to learn more about how insurers and providers identify Medicare patients with social risk factors, address those factors, and determine how much their efforts cost and whether they were effective. The information HHS gathers will be part of a report due to Congress by October of 2019.  [&hellip

Medicaid Expansion Didn’t Hurt Access After All

The expansion of Medicaid in nearly two-thirds of the states has not affected access to care for Medicare participants in those states. According to a new analysis by the National Bureau of Economic Research, Medicare patients had no more trouble getting timely doctors’ appointments, suffered no increase in costs, and experienced no increase in waiting times after their state expanded its Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act. Learn more about these findings in this Healthcare Dive report or go here for access to the National Bureau of Economic Research report “The Impact of Insurance Expansions on the Already Insured: [&hellip

House Members Protest Site-Neutral Payment Proposal

138 members of the House of Representatives have written to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services administrator Seema Verma to protest CMS’s proposal to extend Medicare outpatient site-neutral payment policies to off-campus, provider-based outpatient departments specifically exempted from such policies by Congress under the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015. In questioning CMS’s rationale for the proposed policy, the House members wrote that It is unclear how CMS has deemed all of the OPD [outpatient department] services at the grandfathered off-campus HOPDs [hospital outpatient departments] as cause of an unnecessary increase in volume of OPD services, and we ask you to [&hellip

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