4.3 Million Additional People Could Enroll if All States Expand Medicaid, Reports White House
After CMS announced that 71 million individuals were enrolled in Medicaid and CHIP through March 2015, the White House Council of Economic Advisers released a new report outlining the impact of not expanding Medicaid in the remaining 22 non-expansion states. If these states were to expand Medicaid in 2016, the report finds that an additional 4.3 million people could enroll, 1 million additional people would receive primary care through a clinician’s office, 572,000 more would report being in better health, and 611,000 fewer would having trouble paying other bills due to the burden of medical costs. Additionally, the report identifies the benefits of expansion for states’ economies, including greater productivity of their workforces.
Florida: Medicaid Expansion Fails after House Vote
The Florida House rejected the Senate’s Medicaid expansion bill, despite attempts to address opposition with multiple last-minute amendments, such as granting the Medicaid agency more flexibility to adjust premiums on the State's proposed private exchange and omitting an interim Medicaid managed care phase prior to enrollment in private coverage. The branches will now focus on negotiating a budget to present to Governor Rick Scott (R) ahead of the June 20 conclusion of the special session. Meanwhile, Governor Scott’s Health and Hospital Commission released its initial findings, which aim to make hospital financing more transparent.
New Hampshire: Legislative Branches Pass Budgets without Extended Medicaid Expansion Funds
The New Hampshire House and Senate both passed budgets for Fiscal Years 2016 and 2017 that do not include state funds to extend the State’s Medicaid expansion past its current sunset date at the end of 2016, after which time all expansion states must begin paying for a percentage of expansion-related costs. The Senate’s $11.3 billion budget, which was passed along party lines, is $170 million more than the House budget and includes funding for disabled and elderly individuals and higher education and cuts business tax rates beginning in 2017. Both budgets, however, are less than Governor Maggie Hassan’s (D) $11.5 billion plan, which includes additional funding for mental health and substance abuse programs and state funding for Medicaid expansion in 2017. The chambers must now send a compromise budget in advance of the June 30 deadline to Governor Hassan, who expressed her concern with both chambers' budgets.