CMS grants Maryland a Medicaid waiver: This announcement is interesting for a few reasons. First, it provides an example of what a CMS document looks like that grants a waiver to a state for specific Medicaid programs. Second, unlike broad waivers allowing managed care plans to substitute for traditional Medicaid, this one provides for specific services eligible to receive federal matching funds. The programs covered in this waiver are: a Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP); expanded medically managed intensive inpatient services; an adult dental pilot program; an Assistance in Community Integration Services (ACIS) pilot program with an annual enrollment cap; and “modification of the family planning program effective… so that women of child bearing age who have a family income at or below 200 percent of the FPL and who are not otherwise eligible for Medicaid, CHIP, or Medicare, but had Medicaid pregnancy coverage, will be eligible for the HealthChoice family planning program for 12 months immediately following the 2-month post-partum period.” The third part of interest is the last benefit- family planning- especially given current federal attitudes toward this topic. (This service does NOT include abortions).
Medicaid work requirements could cost hospitals up to $4.1B in revenue in 2019—report: Yesterday’s blog noted how many people in Arkansas could be off the Medicaid rolls with a work linkage. This Commonwealth Fund report estimated that, nationally, lost Medicaid payments due to work ineligibility would cost hospitals $4.1 billion in revenue.
When medicines are unaffordable, here’s how patients cut costs: This article is a nice summary of strategies patients use to cut costs for expensive prescriptions. It also has some instructive graphics how these methods have changed. One piece of good news is that these behaviors declined starting in 2014, when the ACA started.
Payer Roundup—Amazon now accepting consumers’ FSA, HSA: Interesting development. The title is self-explanatory.
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VA’s Private Care Program Headed for Tech Trouble, Review Finds: The VA system is gearing up to provide private options to certain beneficiaries. But this study showed the IT solutions for this insurance option is largely flawed.