Letter to U.S. Governors from HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra on Medicaid Redeterminations

Letter to U.S. Governors from HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra on Medicaid Redeterminations

Pricey Governor:

I’m writing to observe up on my March 2023 letter concerning states’ efforts to return to pre-COVID-19 pandemic Medicaid operations.  As full Medicaid renewals start, it’s critically essential to make sure that people don’t lose protection due solely to administrative processes.  I urge you to undertake all choices that now we have provided to assist eligible people and households keep their well being protection throughout this course of and leverage all state companions to help people and households to finish renewal kinds.

Excessive-quality well being care protection is a prerequisite to having significant entry to the well being care system—one thing that gives peace of thoughts and safety to each American household.  The Division of Well being and Human Companies, by our Facilities for Medicare and Medicaid Companies, is intently monitoring adjustments in Medicaid and Youngsters’s Well being Insurance coverage Program (CHIP) enrollment.  I’m deeply involved with the variety of individuals unnecessarily shedding protection, particularly those that seem to have misplaced protection for avoidable causes that State Medicaid workplaces have the facility to stop or mitigate.

Given the excessive variety of individuals shedding protection attributable to administrative processes, I urge you to evaluate your state’s at the moment elected flexibilities and contemplate going additional to take up present and new coverage choices that now we have provided to guard eligible people and households from procedural termination.  I’m happy to announce a number of new choices for states to contemplate adopting, similar to permitting states to make use of their managed care plans to assist beneficiaries full these kinds.  These new choices construct on present flexibilities now we have already provided states, similar to:

  • Spreading renewals for all populations out over 12 months, which can present extra time to run a clean course of and stop methods from getting backlogged.  A clean course of reduces burden not solely on people and households, but in addition on state eligibility methods. Taking the time to do the method accurately will guarantee these eligible for continued protection don’t expertise a niche in care and people now not eligible simply transition to different sources of protection.
  • Maximizing using knowledge sources, similar to renewing people on the premise of their eligibility for different packages, such because the Supplemental Vitamin Help Program (SNAP) or Non permanent Help for Needy Households (TANF).  This may assist scale back the necessity for some people to fill out and return a Medicaid renewal kind.
  • Partnering with managed care plans and utilizing knowledge out there from the USA Postal Service to replace individuals’s contact data in order that they really obtain the renewal kinds states are sending out.

These are only a few of the choices that assist to take care of protection for eligible individuals – there are a lot of extra, and we welcome the chance to supply technical help to implement these insurance policies.

A full listing of accessible state methods is out there here.

Along with these flexibilities, I encourage all states to associate with stakeholders on the bottom to interact extra straight with Medicaid and CHIP households.  A current survey of Medicaid enrollees discovered that two-thirds of individuals weren’t positive if their state was returning to common Medicaid operations.  We should all do rather more to make sure that everybody with Medicaid or CHIP protection is aware of that they need to examine their mailbox and/or e mail for a renewal kind and return it instantly to take care of their protection.

I urge you to work with native governments, community-based organizations, colleges, faith-based organizations and leaders, grocery shops, pharmacies, and anybody else in your communities who might help individuals perceive the Medicaid and CHIP renewal course of.  We now have revolutionary examples of this engagement throughout the nation.  For instance, in Illinois, Chicago Public Schools provide direct assistance to households renewing their Medicaid and CHIP protection, together with by sending data house with college students and holding neighborhood and outreach occasions.1 I’m asking that we redouble efforts, develop what’s working and attain out even additional to make sure that no eligible beneficiary experiences a loss in protection that might have been averted.

Any avoidable loss in protection is regarding, however I’m notably involved that kids might lose protection as a result of their dad and mom don’t perceive that even when they expertise a transition in protection, their kids are very doubtless nonetheless eligible for protection by Medicaid or CHIP. HHS is dedicated to doing the whole lot in its energy to make sure that our youngsters have entry to care they want.  Even when dad and mom assume they’re now not eligible, states ought to ask dad and mom to nonetheless fill out their renewal kinds for his or her kids.  We additionally urge you to incorporate messaging about Medicaid renewals by colleges, early childhood packages, and summer time camps to folks.

As you already know, states should adjust to federal guidelines concerning how they conduct Medicaid and CHIP renewals, and people have to be afforded the due course of to which they’re entitled to ensure that states to proceed to obtain enhanced federal funding.  We take our oversight duties extraordinarily significantly, and whereas we all know that states are working laborious to satisfy the federal necessities, we won’t hesitate to make use of the compliance authority supplied by Congress, together with requesting that states pause procedural terminations below circumstances outlined by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023, ought to it’s wanted.

As Secretary of Well being and Human Companies, I’m dedicated to creating positive each American has entry to high quality, inexpensive well being protection.  Our partnership is important in making this a actuality, and I urge each state to go above and past to maintain eligible individuals coated.  My crew stands prepared to assist.

Thanks to your continued partnership.


Xavier Becerra


1 Supply: https://www.cps.edu/services-and-supports/health-and-wellness/connecting-to-medicaid-and-snap-cfbu/

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