Bills to Improve Compliance with Medicaid Work Requirement Headed to Governor
Posted on September 11, 2019
On Sept. 11, the Michigan Legislature sent legislation to the governor’s desk that would make it easier for Healthy Michigan Plan beneficiaries to comply with Medicaid work requirements.
The legislation started as a two-bill bipartisan effort in the Senate by Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clark Lake) and Sen. Curtis Hertel (D-East Lansing) and was ultimately merged into Senate Bill (SB) 362 to avoid possible legal conflicts between the two bills. The House voted to approve the bill Sept. 10, followed by the Sept. 11 Senate vote.
The MHA-supported SB 362 would move the deadline for reporting the previous month’s work compliance, currently the 10th day of each month, to the last day of each month. The bill would also allow Medicaid beneficiaries to retroactively report “qualifying activities” for the work engagement requirement for up to 60 days after previous months in which they did not meet the reporting requirements. Recipients are allowed only three months of noncompliance within a 12-month period before losing their Medicaid benefits.
SB 362 would also establish a reporting exemption for recipients whose work engagement can be verified by data already available to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS). This would mean that data routinely provided to the Department of Treasury and other state agencies could be used by the MDHHS to verify individual compliance without action from the beneficiary.
More than 270,000 Healthy Michigan Plan beneficiaries will be subject to the new work requirements, which take effect Jan. 1, 2020. The MDHHS is working with the MHA and other partners to raise awareness of the upcoming work requirements, and beneficiaries will receive information throughout the fall about the requirements and how to inform the MDHHS about their qualifying activities. The MDHHS is also providing education to providers and other agencies that assist enrollees. Hospitals should continue to monitor provider bulletins related to Healthy Michigan Plan changes. The MHA will also share information with members as it becomes available.
Members with questions about the outreach to patients should contact Ruthanne Sudderth at the MHA, and questions about the legislation should be directed to Adam Carlson at the MHA.
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