Use our content This story can be published for free (details). Medicaid enrollment fell by 0.6 percent in 2018 –…
Medicaid enrollment fell by 0.6 percent in 2018 – the first drop since 2007 – due to the strong economy and increased efforts in some states to verify eligibility, finds a new report.
But the costs continue to go up. Total Medicaid spending increased by 4.2 percent in 2018, the same as a year ago, due to rising drug, long-term and psychiatric costs, according to the study released Thursday by the Kaiser Family Foundation. (Kaiser Health News is an editorial independent program for the foundation.)
The states expect the overall medicaid expense rate to accelerate as against 5.3 percent in 201
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About 73 million people were enrolled in Medicaid in August, according to a federal report released Wednesday.
Medicaid, the state federal health insurance program for low-income Americans, has seen its reels floating in the last decade – initially as a result of massive job losses during the big recession and in recent years when dozens of states increased eligibility through federal funding as provided by affordable health care. Thirty-three states expanded their programs to cover people with income below 138 percent of the federal poverty rate, or an income of approximately $ 16,750 for an individual in 2018.
Medical expenses and enrollment usually increase during economic downturns as more people lose job and health benefits. When the economy is humming, Medicaid enrollment is plotted as more people get back to work and can get coverage at work or can afford to buy it on their own. National unemployment was 3.7 per cent in September, the lowest since 1969.
Declining unemployment is the main reason for the decline in Medicaid notification, but some states have reduced their reels by requiring adults and families to verify their competence. For example, Arkansas has cut thousands of people after introducing new steps to confirm eligibility.
The bright economic prospects for states have led many to increase the benefits of efforts and payment rates for healthcare providers.
“A total of 19 states expanded or improved covered benefits in fiscal policy 2018 and 24 states plan to add or improve the benefits for the current fiscal year, which for most states started in July,” the Kaiser report said. “The most common benefits of improvements were reported for mental health and addiction services. A handful of states reported expansions related to dental care, telecoms, physical or occupational therapy and home care services for pregnant women. “
A dozen states increased pay to dentists and 18 states allow primary care pay contributions for the fiscal year 2019
Medicaid covers about 20 percent of US residents and accounts for Nearly one-sixth of medical expenses. Almost half of enrollees are children.
Overall, the federal government pays about 62 percent of Medicaid costs with the state’s recovery of the rest. Poverty states get a higher federal match rate.
Seventeen Republican Controlled States have did not extend Medicaid. For individuals accepted in the program as part of the ACA expansion, the federal government paid the full cost of coverage from 2014 to 2016. It does not pay less than 90 percent thereafter.
In 2018, the state’s share of expenditure increased 4 , 9 percent. This was the first full year in which the states were responsible for one Part of the cost of expansion. The states expect their spending to increase by 3.5 percent in 2019.
Robin Rudowitz, one of the authors of the study and the associate director of Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and Uninsured, said that the survey showed that many States used Medicaid to deal with opioid crisis by increasing the benefits of substance disorders and by making tougher restrictions on prescription.
“Almost every governor wants to do something, and Medicaid is generally a big part of it,” she said.
While the Trump Administration Approving the Labor Requirements for Some Adults at Medicaid has generated controversies over the past year, the report shows that states make many other changes in the program, such as increasing benefits and changing how it gives providers better value.