The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law on March 11, 2021 as a signature effort to assist in the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and the related economic downturn. Included as part of the sweeping legislation is a program to fully subsidize COBRA coverage for six months starting in April of 2021. This expert perspective provides a short overview of COBRA and mini-COBRA, the major elements of the ARPA COBRA Assistance program, and considerations for state policymakers related to the program.
Medicaid Buy-in: State Options and Design Considerations
In recent months, several proposals have been introduced at both the federal and state levels that would permit people above Medicaid eligibility levels to “buy in” to Medicaid or would leverage the Medicaid program to strengthen coverage across the individual market and Medicaid. In this webinar, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s State Health and Value Strategies (SHVS) program, together with technical assistance experts from Manatt Health, examined the central considerations that a state must take into account when developing a Medicaid buy-in proposal; the primary models for state-administered Medicaid buy-in proposals, and the administrative considerations and authorities needed for each model. The webinar also reviewed Section 1332 waiver authority and related deficit neutrality and pass-through funding implications that states will want to consider as they craft their buy-in proposals. We also highlighted states’ current efforts to develop buy-in initiatives.