Latest Morning Briefing Stories
The state’s managed care program is in the spotlight after it was reported that high costs that would not have been reimbursed prevented it from providing important care and services. Other Medicaid news comes from Connecticut and Indiana.
Among other concerns, lawmakers were worried about the cut to the popular CHIP program.
The changes President Donald Trump wants to make to agencies that oversee government aid are unlikely to come to pass, but they signal the White House’s agenda toward social safety-net programs. Right now the focus is on the Education and Labor Departments, but officials are also looking at programs and offices within HHS.
A new report finds 90 percent of recent hospital closures in rural areas were in states that had not expanded its Medicaid program. Also, Medicaid news comes out of Massachusetts, Mississippi and Florida.
While its not clear the measure would actually get to the floor before the midterm elections, the House Budget Committee’s blueprint shows where Republicans’ priorities lie in the coming years. The budget plan would remake Medicare by giving seniors the option of enrolling in private plans that compete with the traditional program.
Most Republican lawmakers don’t want to touch the issue with a ten-foot pool this close to the midterm elections, but conservative groups are still pushing for a change. The proposal, which focuses on giving control to the states, was drafted by groups led by the Heritage Foundation, the Galen Institute and former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.).
Maine voters approved the expansion of the state’s Medicaid program last year and two courts have recently ordered the plan enacted. But Gov. Paul LePage (R) continues to say he won’t do it unless lawmakers come up with a way to cover the cost.
A group of activists are suing the Trump administration over its approval of Kentucky’s waiver request to add work requirements to its Medicaid program. Many states are watching closely to see what the court decides.
Even as lawmakers and government officials start to embrace Medicaid, advocates in states are building momentum with a push to get expansion on ballots. Medicaid news comes out of Michigan, Tennessee, Iowa, Ohio, Massachusetts and Texas, as well.
As more and more states start adding work requirements to their Medicaid programs, this court will decide if they’re legal. Medicaid news comes out of Kansas and Iowa, as well.
While profits were surging, patients at St. Francis Center for Rehabilitation & Healthcare in Darby, Penn. were suffering from what a state official called “extreme” conditions, including a lack of proper wound treatment and nursing care. Meanwhile, in Florida, in a dispute over death certificates, a judge ruled in favor of the nursing home where residents died following a hurricane.
Children end up having to wait years to get help. Families have filed a class action lawsuit against South Carolina asserting that the state is violating the law by not providing medically necessary treatment. Medicaid news comes out of Iowa and Ohio, as well.
The agency released guidelines on Monday specifically geared toward helping states use Medicaid to help infants born addicted to opioids. Meanwhile, lawmakers worry that the FDA is not doing enough to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the country.
The provision would end the state’s expansion of Medicaid if the government fails within 12 months to approve a work requirements waiver that includes a time limit on benefits. Medicaid news comes out of Iowa, Connecticut, and D.C., as well.
Whether to expand the program has been a contentious question in Virginia, even holding up the budget negotiations this spring. Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) signed the legislation Thursday, making Virginia the 33rd state to expand Medicaid.
Some lawmakers have been reluctant to pass the legislation as it targets unused funds for the popular CHIP program. But the measure, which passed 210-206, would take a mostly symbolic whack at government spending because it would basically eliminate leftover funding that wouldn’t have been spent anyway.
The state is just the latest to move toward adding more restrictions to its program, something governors and legislatures are jumping on since CMS signaled its willingness to grant waivers. Medicaid news comes out of Virginia, Texas, Florida and Mississippi, as well.
Maine was the first state in the nation to expand Medicaid through a public referendum, but seven months later and its still not implemented. Gov. Paul LePage (R) has said he won’t expand the program unless lawmakers come up with a way to pay for it under his conditions, but advocates point to the state’s $140 million surplus in their argument. LePage will likely ask the judge the stay the ruling during an appeals process.
Virginia’s decision to expand Medicaid after years of resistance is giving some hope that opposition against the issue has lessened in recent years. Meanwhile, in Texas, poor state oversight has led to companies skimping on essential care for sick children and disabled adults.
Opinion writers look at issues shaping various health care policies.