Despite improvements that have been made over the past several decades, lead poisoning remains a serious hazard for many children in the U.S., presenting significant risks to their health and learning. More than 4 million families with children live in homes with high levels of lead, and approximately half a million under the age of five require treatment. The Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) can provide critical financial support to states as they seek to implement cost-effective lead abatement activities to protect children.
Recent proposals for the incoming Congress and presidential administration to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have also included calls for an overhaul of the current Medicaid program financing structure. Such a change, aimed at reducing federal Medicaid spending, would have significant implications for state Medicaid programs. A new webinar examined these proposals and the potential impact that they could have on states.
Section 1115 waivers allow states to waive certain Medicaid statutory requirements in order to advance state policy priorities and test innovations in their Medicaid programs, provided that they are budget neutral and "further the goals of the Medicaid program." Since 2014, seven states have used 1115 waivers to implement alternative Medicaid expansions, and these waivers are likely to be leveraged by states in the next four years to advance changes to Medicaid. This issue brief, developed by Manatt Health, provides an overview of the features of these alternative Medicaid expansion waivers.
Shared Measurement and Joint Accountability Across Health Care and Non-Health Care Sectors: State Opportunities to Address Population Health Goals
Health care leaders are well-positioned to use cross-sector approaches to drive improvements in population health in collaboration with state leaders. Through the use of joint measurement and accountability tools, policymakers can help to improve health outcomes to an extent not possible through isolated, medical-centric efforts. This issue brief, developed by Dana Hargunani, MD, MPH, outlines how state agencies can use shared measurement and joint accountability across sectors as tools for improving population health outcomes.
The Buying Value Measure Selection Tool: Strategies for Selecting Measures and Developing Aligned Measure Sets
The "Buying Value Measure Selection Tool" was developed to assist state agencies, private purchasers and other stakeholders in creating aligned measure sets, and was first released in 2014. A recent webinar explained this tool and recent updates for state officials and other stakeholders involved in developing and maintaining aligned quality measure sets for health care entities and programs including for health plans, accountable care organizations, and patient-centered medical homes.
Proposals for the incoming Congress and presidential administration to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have also included a call for a fundamental overhaul of the Medicaid program by imposing caps on federal funding to states. Such capped funding would replace the central feature of Medicaid's financing structure, the federal government's legal obligation to share all allowable state Medicaid costs. While the design of various proposals to cap federal Medicaid funding may differ in several ways, they all aim to allow the federal government to achieve budget certainty and reduce federal Medicaid spending.
Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has had a positive impact for states, both in terms of the number of people covered and the budget savings and revenue gains that they have realized as a result. A series of recent reports demonstrates the economic impact in states that have expanded Medicaid. A new webinar examined potential repeal of Medicaid expansion under the ACA, and what this would likely mean for states.
Medicaid expansion has generated significant savings and new revenues for states, which they have used to finance spending priorities and to offset state Medicaid costs. States that have expanded Medicaid received over $60 billion in federal funds in 2015 and covered approximately 11 million newly eligible people. This tool, developed by Manatt Health, is designed to help states document the impacts of Medicaid expansion on state budgets, including revenue generation and reductions to state general fund spending on Medicaid and other health related programs and services. This tool can be used to demonstrate the impact of expansion as the incoming administration and the new Congress develop proposals to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), potentially including the Medicaid expansion.
As we approach the beginning of a new presidential administration, there has been continued debate regarding the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), much of which has focused on the marketplaces, the mandate, and health insurance reforms such as the ban on insurers' blocking coverage to those with pre-existing conditions. A potential elimination of the law's Medicaid expansion to low-income adults and other ACA Medicaid provisions, however, would have far-reaching implications for states and the Medicaid program.
Social factors, including economic stability, housing, education, relationships, neighborhood, and other environmental influences, can have a significant impact on individuals' health status. In order to make improvements to the health of both individuals and their communities, an integrated approach is critical. Policymakers need to bridge the gap between social services and health care delivery in their efforts to make these improvements, and several states have begun to develop innovative approaches toward this integration, which might provide valuable lessons for others.