Dec, 03, 2021

State Health Updates

  • Colorado
    • The Colorado Division of Insurance submitted the Colorado Option 1132 waiver for federal approval. If approved, starting in 2023, the Colorado Option will be available to all Coloradans who buy their health insurance on the individual market and small employers with less than 100 employees. Colorado Option plans are forecasted to lower health insurance premiums for individuals, families, and small businesses by 15 percent by 2025. As a reminder, SHVS is tracking state activity of Section 1332 waivers on our website.  
    • The Office of eHealth Innovation and eHealth Commission released the refreshed state health information technology strategy, the 2021 Colorado Health Information Technology (IT) Roadmap. Over the next year, the Polis-Primavera administration will focus on utilizing health IT to help address the gaps in the healthcare system, working toward expanding affordability, access, and equity in healthcare for all Coloradans.
  • Connecticut – Access Health CT Small Business is waiving the minimum number of employees that are typically required to enroll in a small group health insurance plan. Now through December 15, any small business with 50 or fewer employees in Connecticut can enroll in a group health insurance plan regardless of how many employees participate.
  • Delaware – The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) partnered with the state’s construction industry to drive down the number of drug overdose deaths in the state. This partnership has allowed DPH to provide construction supervisors with training about overdose, the stigma associated with addiction, and Narcan administration.
  • Kentucky – Governor Andy Beshear announced the first healthcare facility to be approved for support through the newly established Kentucky Rural Hospital Loan Program (KRHLP). The KRHLP is making $20 million in low-interest loans available to assist rural hospitals throughout the state.
  • Michigan – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has expanded the Opioid Health Home initiative to more Michigan counties to provide intensive care management and care coordination services for Medicaid enrollees with an opioid use disorder.
  • Nevada – Nevada Health Link, the state-based marketplace, announced that nearly 17,452 Nevadans enrolled in qualified health insurance plans within the first 30 days of open enrollment.
  • New York – Governor Hochul launched the statewide “Boost Up, New York” campaign to urge New York adults to get their booster dose for better protection against COVID-19. The campaign will be featured at popular grocery stores, malls, and transit stations statewide including on bulletins, posters, and multimedia screens. All campaign activations will include a QR code or hyperlink so New Yorkers have easy-to-access scheduling information, as well as resources for those looking to learn more about the importance of getting a booster. The program will kick-off December 6 and run for four weeks. Governor Hochul also announced 18 new #VaxtoSchool pop-up vaccination sites—including eight sites open to children five years and older—to increase vaccination rates among school-aged New Yorkers.
  • North Carolina – Governor Roy Cooper announced that North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) Secretary Mandy K. Cohen will be stepping down from the agency after five years of service to the state. Governor Cooper has appointed Kody Kinsley, current NCDHHS Chief Deputy Secretary for Health and lead for COVID operations, to succeed her beginning January 1. SHVS has enjoyed working with Mandy throughout her time serving North Carolina and we wish her the best of luck in her future endeavors.
  • Pennsylvania
    • Governor Tom Wolf announced $15.7 million in grant funding to support local strategies to stop gun and group violence across Pennsylvania. Grants were awarded to 40 projects through the Violence Intervention and Prevention Grant Program administered by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.
    • First Lady Frances Wolf hostedWomen In Reentry: Mental Health, the third in a series of virtual conversations between reentry advocates and mental health professionals. The panel discussed the impacts of incarceration on a woman’s mental health, the implications they can have on her reentry and highlighted active programs that are supporting the mental health needs of justice-impacted women. 
  • Rhode Island – A new study published by the Rhode Island Department of Health underscores the effects of adverse childhood experiences on health outcomes in adulthood among Rhode Islanders. According to the study, most Rhode Island adults (63 percent) have experienced at least one adverse childhood experience, and 16 percent experienced four or more types of adverse events during childhood.
  • Texas – The Texas Health and Human Services Commission announced the STAR+PLUS Pilot Program, which will carve into Medicaid managed care the coverage of long-term services and supports for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, traumatic brain injuries, and acquired brain injuries. The two-year pilot will begin September 1, 2023.
  • Virginia – The Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services announced that the state will offer Medicaid enrollees six new behavioral health services that strengthen crisis response, address a national emergency in children’s mental healthcare and provide new supports for individuals with developmental disabilities. The new services include two in-home therapy options for children in crisis.
  • Washington – Governor Jay Inslee announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is preparing to send a mobile vaccination unit to several western Washington communities to ensure life-saving COVID-19 vaccines are given out to the public quickly and equitably. The FEMA mobile site is scheduled to open December 20 and will operate for about 30 days.