October 22, 2020

Around the nation: CMS approves Nebraska Medicaid expansion with work requirements

Daily Briefing

    Nebraska under the plan will expand its Medicaid program with a two-tiered approach that will require certain beneficiaries to work, volunteer, attend school, or receive job training to qualify for coverage of extra health care services, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Michigan, Nebraska, and New York.

    • Michigan: The Washtenaw County Health Department on Tuesday issued an emergency stay-at-home order that applies to all undergraduate students at the University of Michigan, as data showed that students from the university accounted for more than 60% of the locality's recent new cases of the novel coronavirus. The order requires students to stay in their residencies unless they're going to class, getting food, or doing "approved work that cannot be done remotely." The order is scheduled to remain in effect until Nov. 3 (Asmelash, CNN, 10/20).

    • Nebraska: CMS on Tuesday approved Nebraska's plan to expand its Medicaid program with a two-tiered approach that will require certain beneficiaries to work, volunteer, attend school, or receive job training in order for coverage of extra health care services. Under the plan, Nebraska will offer a basic Medicaid plan that covers physical and behavioral health care services and prescription drugs, and a prime Medicaid plan that covers those services as well as vision and dental services and certain out-the-counter medications. To be eligible for the prime plan, Medicaid beneficiaries would have to meet the new work requirements and attend a health visit once a year, complete a health risk assessment, and not miss more than three scheduled health visits across six months, among other things (Schulte, Associated Press, 10/20; King, FierceHealthcare, 10/20; Brady, Modern Healthcare, 10/20).

    • New York: Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) on Sunday announced that health care workers and state residents who are at high risk of contracting the coronavirus or developing a severe case of Covid-19 will receive priority in getting a vaccine against the virus once one becomes available. According to the state's vaccine distribution plan, providers who work in patient-care settings, staff at long-term care facilities, and some residents of long-term care facilities will be among the first to receive a coronavirus vaccine (Borter, Reuters, 10/18).

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