Dec, 08, 2020

State Health Updates

COVID-19 Updates

  • Arizona – The Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System covers all forms of telehealth services including asynchronous, remote patient monitoring, teledentistry, and telemedicine. As a result of COVID-19, between November 2019 and November 2020, AHCCCS has seen a 165 percent increase in telehealth utilization. The AHCCCS Medical Coding Resources was recently updated with additional medical coding information and guidance.
  • Maine – Governor Janet Mills and Health and Human Services Commissioner Jeanne Lambrew announced a grant program to support health care organizations that serve residents with MaineCare. Backed by $30 million in Federal CARES Act Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF), the Maine Health Care Financial Relief Program is a new opportunity modeled on the Maine Economic Recovery Grant program. Health care organizations that were ineligible for funding under that program may apply for the new grants.
  • Ohio – The Ohio Department of Medicaid is joining forces with the five Medicaid managed care organizations and Area Agencies on Aging to support Ohioans most vulnerable to COVID-19. From now through the holidays, individuals living in nursing and assisted living facilities can receive additional social and emotional supports through a joint “friendly caller” initiative.
  • Oregon – The Oregon Health Authority released new data analysis showing how COVID-19 impacted the health care system during the first half of 2020. Data show that hospitals and other providers saw a large decline in utilization during the late spring, which led to significant drops in revenue. Drops in utilization led to fewer payouts for coordinated care organizations and commercial insurers, both of which ended the quarter with increased revenue compared to 2019.
  • Pennsylvania – Governor Tom Wolf announced the award of $3 million in grant funding to 15 municipalities and organizations to assist Pennsylvanians currently experiencing homelessness. Under the program, funding will be provided for emergency shelter and temporary emergency shelter to expand shelter for those experiencing homelessness in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The funds will be used to assist homeless providers and communities prepare for, prevent the spread of and respond to the coronavirus by providing emergency shelter, targeted street outreach, and temporary emergency shelter for individuals experiencing homelessness this winter.

Other State Updates

  • Oklahoma – The state submitted an amendment application and a phase-out plan for the Insure Oklahoma program of the SoonerCare demonstration. The amendment and phase-out plan seek to modify the Insure Oklahoma program by phasing out the Insure Oklahoma Individual Plan and establishing a new income band for the IO Employer Sponsored Insurance. These changes are requested in response to the new state Medicaid expansion. The federal public comment period will be open through December 31, 2020.
  • Texas – The Texas Health and Human Services Commission announced its intent to submit to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) a Section 1115 waiver extension application to continue the state’s Medicaid managed care programs, including STAR, STAR+PLUS, and STAR Kids, through September 30, 2027. The waiver extension request seeks to support the development of a coordinated care delivery system, to improve outcomes while containing cost growth, and to transition to quality-based payment systems across health plans and providers.
  • Wisconsin – The state is requesting an amendment to its section 1115 demonstration “SeniorCare” to expand the targeted prescription drug benefit offered under the demonstration to include coverage of vaccinations recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) for administration to adults. The federal public comment period is open through January 1, 2020.