The waiver was approved in the final days of the Trump administration. The Biden administration says it has not gone through the correct notice and comment period.
Biden Administration withdraws billions of Medicaid funds for Texas
A federal waiver granting Texas billions of dollars over the next decade to cover emergency care for the uninsured was abruptly lifted Friday. This could turn the state’s healthcare safety net on its head and put pressure on Republican leaders who are reluctant to expand Medicaid. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said in a letter that they falsely allowed Texas to waive the normal comment deadline if they requested an extension of their 1115 waiver, which reimburses uncompensated care to hospitals across the state. (Blackman, 4/16)
Biden Admin ejects Texas Medicaid Waiver
The Biden administration on Friday overturned a 10-year extension of Texas’s Medicaid waiver, arguing that the Trump administration should not have approved its application of more than $ 100 billion without going through the standard notice and comment period to have. Texas called on CMS in November to expedite an extension of its Medicaid waiver, which mainly covers uncompensated care costs. At the time, the state said it needed an exemption from the usual public comment deadline in order to ensure the financial stability of providers and the state’s Medicaid program during the COVID-19 public health emergency. (Brady, 4/16)
The Washington Post:
Trump tried to downsize Medicaid. So Biden will try to expand it.
The Trump administration has spent four years trying to reshape Medicaid to meet conservative priorities. But now the Biden government is trying to pull it in a different direction. President Trump urged states to weed out ineligible attendees and green-lit job requirements in exchange for benefits. But President Biden – and, if confirmed, his candidate to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Chiquita Brooks-LaSure – is likely to push for more people on the Medicaid list. (Ellerbeck and Cunningham, 4/19)
Mississippi is investigating Medicaid Drug Service Provider Centene
The Chartered Accountant and the Mississippi Attorney General are investigating whether Centene Corp. as a provider of Medicaid drug services, has not disclosed any discounts for pharmacy services, excessive dispensing fees or reimbursements for amounts already paid. Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost made similar allegations in a lawsuit. « Corporate greed has led Centene and its wholly-owned subsidiaries to get taxpayers out of the millions, » he said. « Centene has broken trust in the state of Ohio and I intend to hold that company accountable for its fraudulent practices. » (Mitchell, 4/18)
Payers and providers fight over the reimbursement of telemedicine costs if the congress changes
As members of Congress decide how to expand access to telemedicine after the pandemic, one of the biggest questions has centered on how much Medicare providers should be paid for virtual care. While the fees Medicare pays for telemedicine and personal services are currently the same, this agreement – along with several other CMS telemedicine exemptions – will expire at the end of the public health emergency if no action is taken by Congress. (Hellmann and Tepper, 4/16)
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