State Health Updates
- California – As of May 1, Medi-Cal, the state’s Medicaid program, is extending eligibility for full coverage to more than 185,000 individuals who are 50 years of age or older, regardless of immigration status.
- Georgia – CMS notified Georgia that its previously approved Section 1332 waiver would be suspended but provided the state with the opportunity to submit a corrective action plan that would bring the waiver program into compliance with federal requirements.
- Hawaii – The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s Health Policy Initiative (HPI), which aims to improve healthcare in Hawaiʻi, was launched thanks to a $10 million multi-year commitment from the Med-QUEST Division of the state Department of Human Services, the state’s Medicaid program. HPI will facilitate public impact research in health analytics under the direction of the Social Science Research Institute.
- Maine – Governor Mills signed a supplemental budget that invests $12 million to expand Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) eligibility to children in families with incomes up to 300 percent of the poverty level.
- Minnesota – The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) announced the launch of a podcast called the LoopBack, a platform for creating dialogue between DHS and community members on topics of community interest, to uplift community voices and explore how DHS can better serve the people of Minnesota. More information about the LoopBack and episode transcripts are available at mn.gov/dhs/loopback.
- Nebraska – The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) launched the first phase of a new benefit application, the iServe Nebraska Portal, that will provide a modern and easy-to-use system for Nebraskans to apply for DHHS benefits and services. The new portal is a single online application for Nebraskans to apply for Medicaid and economic assistance benefits. Those applying for benefits will only need to enter their basic information once.
- Wisconsin – The Wisconsin Governor’s Health Equity Council (GHEC) released the executive summary and prelude to their full report of final recommendations. Established under Governor Tony Evers’ Executive Order #17, the GHEC was charged with creating a comprehensive plan to achieve long-lasting and equitable health outcomes for all Wisconsinites. The council’s leadership is drafting the full report, to be published in early summer 2022, and is working with council members to finalize recommendations.
- South Carolina and Tennessee – CMS announced that Tennessee and South Carolina can begin offering Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage for 12 months postpartum to an estimated 22,000 and 16,000 pregnant and postpartum individuals, respectively, through a new state plan opportunity made available by the American Rescue Plan. Tennessee and South Carolina join Louisiana, Michigan, Virginia, New Jersey, and Illinois in extending Medicaid and CHIP coverage from 60 days to 12 months postpartum.