Medicaid Council update

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Lots of good news at Friday’s MAPOC meeting. DSS has significantly improved their redetermination process in response to huge backlogs that prompted a legal aid lawsuit. The dual eligible Health Neighborhood proposal’s behavioral health component has been improved by shifting from the controversial, administratively complex and fragmented co-lead proposal to a partnership. This is what it always should be – partnerships across health care silos into an integrated neighborhood. People don’t come in silos, only the health system does, and further codifying that in policy is a very bad idea. The state is still currently pursuing a limited health home option only for people with serious mental illness. Health homes are an ACA provision reimbursing states 90% of care coordination costs for people with chronic conditions but only for two years. At the meeting, agency staff noted that CMS has issued guidance that states will retain the ability to access the 90% match for other populations in the future, but speakers noted the uncertainty of future federal funding due to sequestration and the imminent fiscal cliff. The state was urged to move swiftly to ensure that every eligible person be covered by the option as soon as possible.