Jun, 01, 2021

State Health Updates

COVID-19 Updates

  • Colorado – Governor Jared Polis announced the Colorado Comeback Cash Vaccine Drawing, where vaccinated Coloradans will have the opportunity to win $1 million, for a total of $5 million in prizes given out. Each week, for five weeks, one winner will be selected. Winners will be announced on June 4, June 11, June 18, June 25, with the final winner being announced on July 7. Coloradans must be vaccinated by June 30 to qualify to win on July 7.
  • North Carolina – A new tool created by the NC Department of Health and Human Services that maps social vulnerability and vaccination rates by census tract has helped North Carolina vaccine providers increase vaccinations by 50 percent in 89 underserved communities. The COVID-19 census tract mapping tool highlights areas of the state with the highest rates of social vulnerability and lowest rates of COVID-19 vaccination. 
  • Ohio – During Governor Mike DeWine’s COVID-19 briefing this week he called on managed care companies to continue efforts to increase vaccine uptake among Ohio Medicaid enrollees. Currently, the vaccine uptake among Medicaid enrollees is 22 percent as compared to a 45 percent uptake among Ohioans overall.
  • Texas – Governor Greg Abbott, the Texas Division of Emergency Management, and the Texas Military Department announced the expansion of the State Mobile Vaccine Program to include groups of five or more Texans who voluntarily choose to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Texans can call 844-90-TEXAS and select Option 3 to schedule a mobile vaccine clinic to vaccinate groups of friends, families, employees, volunteers, and more.
  • Wisconsin – The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has updated the data displayed on the COVID-19 Summary Data page. The new Wisconsin COVID-19 Summary Statistics dashboard will continue to report COVID-19 cases and deaths, with an emphasis on seven-day averages, and will also display vaccination rates and disease activity. 


Other State Updates

  • District of Columbia – Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that the District is launching a pilot program to shift 911 calls for emergency mental health services from an automatic police dispatch to a dispatch inclusive of a mental health crisis response. During the pilot, the Department of Behavioral Health’s Community Response Teams will serve as specialized, rapid response units to be dispatched to mental health-related 911 calls instead of automatically deploying police officers.
  • Maine – The Maine Department of Health and Human Services is seeking stakeholder input regarding the American Rescue Plan Act’s temporary HCBS FMAP increase and is hosting a live zoom listening session and also soliciting written feedback. 
  • Michigan – The Michigan Opioids Task Force and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services released the annual report for 2020 on the state’s efforts to respond to the opioid crisis. The report outlines progress by the group, which was appointed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer as part of a goal to reduce opioid overdose deaths in Michigan in half from 2020 to 2025.
  • North Carolina – The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services announced the selection of organizations to serve three regions of the state as part of the Medicaid Healthy Opportunities Pilot. The program will create a systematic approach to integrating and financing non-medical services that address housing stability, transportation access, food security and interpersonal safety into the delivery of health care.
  • Washington – The Health Care Authority announced that the state’s Medicaid Director, MaryAnne Lindeblad, will retire on July 31 after holding the position since 2012. MaryAnne and her wealth of experience and knowledge will be greatly missed and we wish her the best for this next chapter.
  • Vermont – The Vermont Agency of Human Services is soliciting input on a spending plan to enhance, expand, and strengthen Medicaid HCBS. The Agency is encouraging all Vermont HCBS providers, associations, and advocacy organizations to complete a survey to provide input into the initial plan the Agency will submit to CMS.