Yesterday I noted that the big year-end federal omnibus spending bill includes provisions which allow states to start kicking people off of Medicaid who are only eligible thanks to the COVID-19 public health emergency bills passed in 2020 & 2021..but it at least does so in a fairly responsible way by phasing out the extra federal matching funds gradually over a 9-month period, to prevent states from dumping everyone all at once.
The omnibus bill also includes other important positive Medicaid provisions such as letting children who are eligible for the program stay on it for at least 12 months regardless of household income changes, and letting states offer 12 months of postpartum Medicaid/CHIP coverage to newborn children & their mothers on a permanent basis instead of the current 5-year limit.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced today additional resources and flexibilities available in response to Hurricane Fiona in the commonwealth of Puerto Rico. CMS is working closely with the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico to put these flexibilities in place to ensure those affected by this natural disaster have access to the care they need – when they need it most.
On September 18, 2022, President Biden determined that an Emergency exists in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico due to the emergency conditions resulting from the then Tropical Storm Fiona beginning on September 17, 2022, and continuing. Additionally, on September 20, 2022, Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra determined that a Public Health Emergency exists in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and has existed since September 17, 2022.
CMS stands ready to assist with resources and waivers to ensure hospitals and other facilities can continue to operate and provide access to care to those impacted by the consequences of the hurricane.