In­di­ana scales back pro­posal on Med­i­caid work re­quire­ment

Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS - —Vir­gil Dick­son

In­di­ana has re­laxed its pro­posal to im­pose a work re­quire­ment on Med­i­caid ben­e­fi­cia­ries fol­low­ing pub­lic back­lash for the new pro­vi­sions.

Un­der the re­vised amend­ment sub­mit­ted to the CMS last week, In­di­ana would not re­quire stu­dents, preg­nant women, home­less in­di­vid­u­als and some other Med­i­caid ben­e­fi­cia­ries to seek work or be em­ployed as a con­di­tion of el­i­gi­bil­ity.

The move is part of In­di­ana’s re­newal ap­pli­ca­tion for its Healthy In­di­ana Plan 2.0 waiver, and state health of­fi­cials be­lieve its health­care costs could go down if the re­quest is ap­proved. The state seeks to re­quire all able-bod­ied HIP par­tic­i­pants to either work on av­er­age 20 hours per week; be en­rolled in full-time or part­time ed­u­ca­tion; or par­tic­i­pate in a job search and train­ing pro­gram.

Af­ter re­ceiv­ing nearly 60 com­ments, most of them crit­i­cal of the re­quest, the state de­cided to tweak the pro­vi­sions.

In­di­ana es­ti­mates that 30%, or more than 130,000 of the 438,600 Med­i­caid en­rollees, will have to com­ply with the new re­quire­ment af­ter fac­tor­ing in all the ex­emp­tions. Cur­rently, 244,000 In­di­ana Med­i­caid ben­e­fi­cia­ries are un­em­ployed and an ad­di­tional 58,000 mem­bers work fewer than 20 hours per week.

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