Apr, 12, 2021

State Health Updates

COVID-19 Updates

  • Florida – The Agency for Healthcare Administration announced updated vaccine administration rates for Medicaid. COVID-19 vaccines administered with a date of service on or after March 15, 2021, must be paid at the rates updated by CMS effective March 15, 2021. All guidance is applicable to both the fee-for-service and statewide Medicaid managed care delivery systems unless otherwise stated.
  • Minnesota – The Department of Human Services published a bulletin explaining the treatment of coronavirus response payments under the ARP for Minnesota health care programs. The bulletin describes how the additional Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation and recovery rebate payments are treated for purposes of determining eligibility for Medical Assistance and MinnesotaCare applicants and enrollees.
  • Virginia – Governor Ralph Northam announced several efforts aimed at increasing Virginia’s vaccinator workforce. Health care providers who are now authorized to administer the COVID-19 vaccine include dentists, dental hygienists, veterinarians, optometrists, and health professions students enrolled in an accredited Virginia program. Eligible health care providers may register to volunteer as a COVID-19 vaccinator through either the Virginia Medical Reserve Corps or the newly-established Virginia Volunteer Vaccinator Registry.
  • Wisconsin – The Department of Health Services released a new data table on their variant webpage that shows SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) variant proportions by Health Care Emergency Readiness Coalition region. The variants page now also includes information on two additional variant strains of SARS-CoV-2: variants B.1.427 and B.1.429. DHS first identified these variants in Wisconsin in December 2020 and is now tracking them and displaying them publicly.

Other State Updates

  • California – The Department of Health Care Services released for public comment the state’s revised California Advancing and Innovating Medi-Cal, also known as CalAIM, Section 1115 demonstration waiver proposal. DHCS is also seeking an amendment to expand the existing Specialty Mental Health Services Section 1915(b) waiver and consolidate Medi-Cal managed care, dental managed care, SMHS, and the Drug Medi-Cal Organized Delivery System under a single 1915(b) waiver. The public comment period is open through May 6.
  • Colorado – As part of Colorado’s Health IT Roadmap Care Coordination Initiative, the Office of eHealth Innovation and the eHealth Commission developed two resources: a white paper that aims to create a shared vision among Colorado stakeholders interested in improving whole-person care coordination and an SDOH screening guide for health care providers interested in screening for SDOH and documenting the results in an electronic health record.
  • Illinois – The Department of Healthcare and Family Services and the Department of Insurance published a report examining the feasibility for coverage affordability initiatives in Illinois. The report is the product of a feasibility study required by legislation and explores policy options to make health insurance more affordable for low- and middle-income Illinois residents. The study is designed to provide policymakers with a menu of policy options to improve health care affordability, reduce the number of uninsured residents, and improve health equity.
  • Massachusetts – The Executive Office of Health and Human Services plans to submit a request to CMS to amend the state’s Section 1115 demonstration. The request includes extending eligibility for postpartum coverage to 12 months and authorizing postpartum coverage for members not otherwise eligible due to immigration status. The state is accepting public comments through April 25.
  • New Mexico – Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed into law Senate Bill 317, establishing the Health Care Affordability Fund, which is dedicated to reducing the cost of health insurance and medical expenses for working families. The bill also prohibits copays and other cost sharing for people with insurance who seek behavioral health services. The Health Care Affordability Fund will be financed by replacing a recently phased-out federal fee on insurance companies with a state version by updating New Mexico’s existing surtax on insurance companies from 1 percent to 3.75 percent. As  reminder, SHVS has a resource for states on the considerations for developing a state health insurer fee following repeal of the federal fee.
  • Ohio – The Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) selected Aetna to serve as the specialized managed care organization for the state’s children with the most complex behavioral health needs under the new OhioRISE (Ohio Resilience through Integrated Systems and Excellence) program. Aetna will work with ODM and Governor DeWine’s Family and Children First Cabinet Council to implement a child and family-centric model featuring new targeted services and intensive care coordination delivered by community partners. Aetna also will coordinate with the state’s Medicaid managed care organizations and the new single pharmacy benefit manager to ensure medical and pharmaceutical services and supports are integrated in the child’s comprehensive health plan.
  • Virginia – The Commonwealth submitted an application to HHS requesting to amend Virginia’s Section 1115 demonstration “FAMIS MOMS and FAMIS Select” to extend health coverage from 60 days to 12 months postpartum.
  • Washington – The state submitted an amendment to CMS for the Washington Medicaid Transformation Project Section 1115(a) demonstration. The amendment request includes four components: DSRIP program value-based payment (VBP) adoption target for demonstration year 5, which is calendar year 2021; DSRIP VBP improvement score methodology; long-term services and supports presumptive eligibility; and expanding transportation services for Medicaid Alternative Care and Tailored Support for Older Adults enrollees. The federal public comment period is open through May 2.