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Senators Murray, Alexander Reach Bipartisan Deal on Health Bill

This week, our In Focus section reviews the bipartisan health deal reached by Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN), both members of the Senate’s Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions (HELP) Committee. Bipartisan talks around a bill to stabilize insurance markets have been ongoing for months, with discussions resuming after the Senate pulled a vote on the Graham-Cassidy reform bill last month. The Murray-Alexander bill, for which a discussion draft has been circulated, seeks to stabilize insurance markets through several key actions around cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments to insurers and Section 1332 waivers, as well as several additional provisions. Below, we provide a summary of the key provisions as they stand.

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Medicaid Managed Care Enrollment Update – Q3 2017

This week, our In Focus section reviews recent Medicaid enrollment trends in capitated, risk-based managed care in 27 states.[1] Many state Medicaid agencies elect to post monthly enrollment figures by health plan for their Medicaid managed care population to their websites. This data allows for the timeliest analysis of enrollment trends across states and managed care organizations. Nearly all 27 states have released monthly Medicaid managed care enrollment data through the third quarter (Q3) of 2017. This report reflects the most recent data posted.

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Graham-Cassidy Affordable Care Act (ACA) Repeal-And-Replace Bill

This week, our In Focus section reviews the bill put forward last week by Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA) to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). General consensus, the HMA Roundup included, viewed ACA repeal-and-replace efforts as largely defeated at the end of July, with the Senate’s failure to pass the Better Care Reconciliation Act. There is, however, an emerging view, which was shared by several speakers at last week’s HMA conference, that the Graham-Cassidy bill has a real chance of passing the Senate ahead of the September 30 deadline, at which point the reconciliation process expires and a bill would require 60 votes to pass the Senate. Below, we highlight key provisions of the Graham-Cassidy bill that impact federal funding to states, state Medicaid programs, and the Exchange and individual insurance markets, including both a block grant program targeted at higher-income and Medicaid expansion populations and a Medicaid per capita cap funding structure.

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New Mexico Issues Centennial Care 2.0 Medicaid Managed Care RFP

This week, our In Focus section reviews the request for proposals (RFP) released by the New Mexico Human Services Department (HSD) to reprocure contracts for the state’s Medicaid managed care program in its second phase, Centennial Care 2.0. Centennial Care provides integrated Medicaid managed care coverage, including long-term services and supports (LTSS) and behavioral health, to nearly 700,000 Medicaid beneficiaries in the state, with annual spending of roughly $4.5 billion.

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Medicaid and Exchange Enrollment Update – May 2017

This week, our In Focus section reviews updated information issued by the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Medicaid expansion enrollment from the “May 2017 Medicaid and CHIP Application, Eligibility Determination, and Enrollment Report,” published on July 21, 2017. Additionally, we review 2017 Exchange enrollment data from the “Health Insurance Marketplaces 2017 Open Enrollment Period: Final State-Level Public Use File,” published by CMS on March 15, 2017. Combined, these reports present a picture of Medicaid and Exchange enrollment in the first half of 2017, representing nearly 75 million Medicaid and CHIP enrollees and more than 12 million Exchange enrollees.

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North Carolina Outlines Proposed Design for Medicaid Managed Care

This week, our In Focus section reviews “North Carolina’s Proposed Program Design for Medicaid Managed Care,” a draft proposal published this week for public comment, which provides a detailed overview of the planned statewide Medicaid managed care program to be launched in 2019. By 2023, North Carolina estimates it will have transitioned roughly 1.8 million Medicaid beneficiaries in the state to managed care. North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is encouraging public comment on the program design proposal through September 8, 2017, ahead of a planned request for information (RFI) release later this year.

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Virginia Releases Medallion 4.0 Medicaid Managed Care RFP

This week, our In Focus section reviews the request for proposals (RFP) issued by the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS) for the Medallion 4.0 Medicaid managed care program. Medallion 4.0 will serve roughly 740,000 children, including those with special health care needs, families, and individuals in foster care and adoption assistance programs, with annual Medicaid managed care spending of more than $3 billion when fully implemented by the end of 2018. Proposals are due to DMAS on September 8, 2017.

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Quarterly Medicaid Managed Care Enrollment Update – Q2 2017

This In Focus article was originally published in the July 12, 2017 HMA Weekly Roundup.

This week, our In Focus section reviews recent Medicaid enrollment trends in capitated, risk-based managed care in 27 states.[1] Many state Medicaid agencies elect to post monthly enrollment figures by health plan for their Medicaid managed care population to their websites. This data allows for the timeliest analysis of enrollment trends across states and managed care organizations. Nearly all 27 states have released monthly Medicaid managed care enrollment data through the second quarter (Q2) of 2017. This report reflects the most recent data posted.

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Highlights from NASBO Spring 2017 Fiscal Survey of States

This In Focus article was originally published in the June 21, 2017 HMA Weekly Roundup.

This week, our In Focus section highlights some of the key findings of the Fiscal Survey of the States Spring 2017, released this month by the National Association of State Budget Officers (NASBO). The association conducted surveys of state budget officers in all 50 states in February through April 2017. The findings in the report focus on the key determinants of state fiscal health, highlighting data and state-by-state budget actions by area of spending. Below we summarize the major takeaway points from the report, as well as highlight key findings on Medicaid-specific and other health care budget items.

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