Dec, 19, 2022

Did You Miss Them? Top State Health and Value Strategies Publications From 2022

By Heather Howard and Sally Mabon, State Health and Value Strategies

States remained at the center of health policy action again in 2022. As the pandemic entered its third year, states have been planning in earnest for the unwinding of the federal public health emergency (PHE). They have also been exploring innovative ways to improve the health and well-being of Medicaid enrollees through new Section 1115 Medicaid demonstrations and leveraging Medicaid to advance health equity. At State Health and Value Strategies we have been busy supporting states in these efforts, and wanted to share a selection of publications and resources on these topics and more.

Helping States Prepare for the Unwinding of the Public Health Emergency

Medicaid enrollment has increased by over 19 million people during the pandemic, due largely to the continuous coverage requirement, which prohibits states from disenrolling almost all individuals from Medicaid. At the end of the PHE, states will no longer be subject to the continuous coverage requirement, and a projected 15 million people, or 17% of current Medicaid/CHIP enrollees, are at risk of losing health coverage. (Xanax) The following resources were designed to help states prepare for what will be the largest coverage event since enactment of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and one with significant equity implications in the absence of strategies that minimize the loss of coverage.

Supporting State Innovation

States continue to leverage powerful tools to advance the health of their residents. Recent Section 1115 Medicaid demonstrations represent innovative new efforts to finance programs addressing health-related social needs. States also continue to incentivize Medicaid managed care entities to address health disparities and the unmet social needs that contribute to poor health outcomes. Finally, as the ACA’s preventive services benefit faces challenges in federal courts, states are exploring ways to ensure their residents maintain coverage of these essential services.

Advancing Health Equity

As COVID has laid bare the health disparities rooted in structural racism, states have recognized the importance of collecting and monitoring data that is disaggregated by race, ethnicity, and language and the value of leveraging managed care contracts to advance equity. Also, in recognition of the burden the pandemic has placed on people who are uninsured, state policymakers are increasingly focused on strategies to increase access to affordable healthcare coverage for non-citizen populations. Finally, the worsening maternal health crisis looms large for state health officials, especially since Medicaid accounts for 75% of all public expenditures for family planning services and covers close to half of all births nationally.