Monday Morning Medicaid Must Reads: June 19th, 2017

Helping you consider differing viewpoints. Before it’s illegal. 


Article 1: Nevada May Become First State To Offer Medicaid To All, Regardless Of Income, Alison Kodjak, NPR June 13, 2017 

Clay’s summary: I think SprinkleCare is political posturing that appeals mainly to those who know very little about CAID – but its getting dreamers excited, so maybe I’m the one who doesn’t know so much.

Key Passage from the Article

Under the proposal, Medicaid coverage would be offered alongside commercial insurance on Nevada’s state-run health exchange starting in 2019. Sprinkle says he’s not sure what the coverage would cost. The state would conduct an analysis of the Medicaid program to determine the size of premiums.

They would likely be lower than traditional insurance premiums, because Medicaid reimburses doctors less than most insurance plans and also pays lower prices for prescription drugs.

“If the expansion goes away, I really think this is going to be a viable option for those who lose coverage,” Sprinkle says. He estimates about 300,000 Nevadans may enroll.

He says that if the Republican health care bill becomes law, people could use the tax credits in the bill to buy into Medicaid. And if it doesn’t, they could still use their tax credits and subsidies from the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, to buy in.

To be able to sell policies on the exchange, Nevada would have to get approval from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in the form of a waiver. Sprinkle says he has had discussions with CMS officials who were open to the idea.


Read it here 

Article 2: Medicaid expansion to cost states nearly $9 billion, Kimberly Leonard, Washington Examiner, June 15, 2017

Clay’s summary: When budgeting for Medicaid expansion, go ahead and double whatever proponents say it will cost. Triple it for any estimates beyond 5 years. Some of this is because states paid nothing up until this year, some of it is because the per member costs of expansion members was were woefully underestimated.

Key Passage from the Article

State spending for Medicaid expansion under Obamacare is expected to reach $8.5 billion in 2018, a $4 billion increase from 2016, according to a national report released Thursday.

The report, assembled annually by the National Association of State Budget Offices, or NASBO, shows that median general fund spending on Medicaid grew 2.7 percent in fiscal 2016 and is estimated to grow at 5.2 percent in fiscal 2017. That outpaces growth in median general fund revenue, which reached 2.4 percent in fiscal 2016 and 2.5 percent in fiscal 2017.


Read it here


Article 3: Willowbrook, the institution that shocked a nation into changing its laws, Matt Reimann, Timeline, June 14, 2017

Clay’s summary: Our colleagues in the Caid and general health space who fought to end places like Willowbrook did the Lord’s work. I think they are on par with Abolitionists.

Key Passage from the Article

The Willowbrook State School opened on October, 1947, admitting 20 mentally disabled patients from upstate institutions. In only a short time, Willowbrook was overfilled and understaffed. By 1955, it had reached its full capacity of 4,000 occupants. Around that time, hepatitis infections ran rampant among patients and staff. Only a short time later, in 1960, an outbreak of measles killed 60 patients.
Yet these snapshots fail to convey the wretched and abhorrent conditions Willowbrook patients lived under. Despite its name as a “school,” there was barely any educational structure at Willowbrook. When teaching did happen, it was only for a handful of cooperative students, and only for around two hours per day.

Most of the Willowbrook experience was defined by constant neglect, a condition that the overstressed and underfunded staff were not necessarily responsible for. In some buildings, the mentally disabled were let to huddle in rooms, moaning, fidgeting, meandering, all with little care or resources. Many went naked for lack of clothing and supervision. Others sat drenched in their urine and feces, and some smeared them on the walls and on their clothes, with no available garments to replace them. Sexual and physical abuse at the hands of fellow patients and employees was common, as was disease.

Read it here