Florida: Negotiations on Uncompensated Care Funding and Medicaid Expansion Continue

After Governor Rick Scott’s (R) meeting with Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Sylvia Burwell regarding the renewal of Low-Income Pool (LIP) funding for Florida safety-net hospitals, HHS reiterated that Florida “falls short of the key principles HHS will use in considering proposals regarding uncompensated care pool programs,” and Governor Scott filed an injunction request with the U.S. District Court in Florida to order HHS to review LIP renewal separately from Medicaid expansion. Additionally, Governor Scott issued an executive order formalizing the Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding that will analyze the revenues of Florida hospitals, insurance and healthcare providers, while the House and Senate announced that their legislative special session will run from June 1 through June 20. Prior to the end of this year’s legislative session, the Senate passed a budget that included Medicaid expansion and LIP funding; the House passed an amended version that excludes both.

Montana: Federal Officials Express Concern with Medicaid Expansion Requirements

The Obama administration expressed concern with the cost-sharing requirements included in the Medicaid expansion recently signed by Governor Steve Bullock (R), but noted its willingness to work with the State to address any issues. In its current form, the law would impose copays and monthly premiums on enrollees with incomes between 50% and 138% of the federal poverty level (FPL), though federal law prohibits premiums for Medicaid enrollees with income less than 100% FPL absent a waiver. State Senator Ed Buttrey (R), who sponsored the bill, commented that he had been in communication with the Obama administration regarding the requirements and acknowledged that Montana would be requesting more flexibility than CMS has granted to-date. The State intends now to draft a waiver plan and release for public comment before submitting it to the federal government.