Jun, 08, 2021

State Health Updates


  • Minnesota – Governor Tim Walz announced the rewards request form for the ‘Your Shot to Summer’ vaccine incentive campaign is now open for submissions at www.mn.gov/covid19/summer. Minnesotans 12 years of age and older who have gotten their first COVID-19 vaccine dose since May 27, 2021 are eligible to fill out the request form and choose their preferred vaccine reward.
  • New York – Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the first-round winners of the ‘Get A Shot to Make Your Future’ incentive for a full scholarship to a SUNY or CUNY school. Winners receive a full scholarship to any New York public college or university, including tuition and room and board. New York State will administer the random drawing and select 10 winners a week over five weeks.
  • Pennsylvania – The Pennsylvania Latino Affairs Commission hosted a discussion about the importance of ensuring Latino/a communities in Pennsylvania receive reliable and trustworthy information about COVID-19 vaccines. The panel discussion, led by Second Lady Gisele Fetterman and Acting Physician General Dr. Denise Johnson, took place during a Facebook Live event entitled Vax Facts: Privacy and Safety for the Latino/a Communities. 
  • Washington – Governor Jay Inslee announced a suite of new incentives to help encourage unvaccinated Washingtonians to get the COVID-19 vaccine. The Washington State Lottery will be conducting a “Shot of a Lifetime” giveaway series during the month of June, working with state agencies, technology companies, sports teams and higher education institutions across the state to offer a myriad of different prizes to vaccinated individuals, including lottery cash drawings, higher education tuition and expense assistance, sports tickets and gear, and airline tickets.

Other State Updates

  • Arizona – AHCCCS announced that effective October 1, 2021, the Medicaid School Based Claiming (MSBC) program will cover all Medicaid-enrolled children in participating Local Education Agencies (school districts). With this change, Local Education Agencies will have more flexibility in their school-based Medicaid programs by allowing school districts to bill Medicaid for medical or behavioral health services delivered to all Medicaid-enrolled children, not just those with a special education plan documented by an Individualized Education Plan (IEP).
  • California – The California Health and Human Services Agency released their spending plan for the enhanced FMAP avaliable for Home and Community Based Services through the American Rescue Plan. The plan builds off of Governor Gavin Newsom’s recently released California Comeback Plan.
  • Colorado – Governor Polis signed into law legislation aimed at improving how Colorado administers and delivers long-term care services and supports to members enrolled in Colorado Medicaid. HB21-1227 authorizes the Department of Health Care Policy & Financing (the Department) to develop clear and predetermined criteria, to analyze and enforce a “demonstration of need” as part of the process to determine where and when a new Colorado Medicaid nursing facility can open when they apply for Colorado Medicaid certification. Additionally, the bill allows the Department to exempt nursing facilities with five or fewer Medicaid beds from the current reimbursement methodology and instead require the facilities to be reimbursed at the statewide average rate. 
  • Georgia – The U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services and Treasury are requesting that Georgia submit an updated actuarial and economic analyses for Part II of their Section 1332 waiver, the Georgia Access Model, by July 3. The updated baseline projections are necessary to allow the Departments to evaluate whether the Georgia Access Model will satisfy the statutory guardrails when the baseline projections are adjusted to include more affordable coverage and higher enrollment (both subsidized and nonsubsidized) resulting from the recent changes in federal law and policy, than those Georgia used when it did its prior analysis.
  • Louisiana – The Louisiana Department of Health is seeking feedback on transportation and pharmacy benefits provided to Medicaid members through Healthy Louisiana health plans.  
  • Nebraska – The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) announced that all Nebraskans who are eligible for Medicaid expansion will receive equal benefits coverage, including dental services, vision services, and over-the-counter medications, starting October 1, 2021. To initiate this change, DHHS will notify CMS of its intent to withdraw its application for Section 1115 Heritage Health Adult (HHA) demonstration program. The HHA demonstration program would have allowed Nebraskans who have Basic benefits coverage through Medicaid expansion to qualify for Prime benefits by participating in wellness, personal responsibility, and community engagement activities.
  • New Jersey – Governor Phil Murphy released a report on New Jersey’s response to the opioid overdose epidemic during the COVID-19 public health emergency in 2020. Governor Murphy also announced a new public data dashboard from the Office of the Chief State Medical Examiner that will provide public health partners and law enforcement agencies with near real-time data regarding suspected-drug related deaths, enhancing their ability to rapidly address potential threats to the community. 
  • New York – Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that New York State of Health, the state-based marketplace, has reached a record-breaking enrollment total of 6 million New Yorkers who have signed up for health insurance through the marketplace across Medicaid, Essential Plan, Child Health Plus and Qualified Health Plans.
  • New Mexico – The New Mexico Human Services Department announced improved access to opioid addiction treatment providers using a one-stop search map and the increased availability of video and phone provider treatment services through the Dose of Reality Treatment Works campaign. The campaign includes an easy interactive treatment locator map, a resource guide and video to also address stigma associated with opioid addiction.
  • Texas – The Texas Health and Human Services Commission contracted with UT Health Science Center at San Antonio to launch a new, free behavioral health awareness eLearning series to empower families with more knowledge and understanding of behavioral health conditions.
  • Washington – The Office of Insurance Commissioner announced that fifteen health insurers filed an average proposed rate increase of 5.47 percent for Washington’s individual health insurance market. The plans and proposed rates are currently under review and final decisions will come this fall.