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MACPAC to Urge Slowdown on Medicaid Work Requirement Approvals

Analysis  |  By Steven Porter  
   October 26, 2018

The members also indicated that they want Arkansas to slow down its rollout to incorporate more protection for enrollees.

A federal panel of advisers will ask the Trump administration to pull back a bit from its enthusiastic embrace of Medicaid work requirements.

Members of the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC) decided Thursday that they would ask the federal government to hold off on further approvals for the controversial state-level policy changes, as Bloomberg Law's Victoria Pelham reported.

The MACPAC members also indicated that they want Arkansas—which was the first state to implement the requirements—to slow down its rollout to incorporate more protection for enrollees, Pelham reported.

Arkansas faces a legal challenge over its Medicaid work requirements from some of the same groups that successfully persuaded a federal judge earlier this year to block similar requirements in Kentucky.

While the administration and its allies argue the so-called community engagement requirements help to raise beneficiaries out of poverty, critics contend that the underlying goal of these policies and their potentially cumbersome reporting requirements is to cull people from state Medicaid rolls.

More than 4,100 beneficiaries in Arkansas lost their Medicaid coverage on October 1 for failing to meet the new requirements, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, which cited numbers from the state. If current trends continue, then thousands more will lose coverage in the coming months.

Steven Porter is an associate content manager and Strategy editor for HealthLeaders, a Simplify Compliance brand.

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