New report analyzes financial impact of potential Medicaid expansion under Idaho ballot initiative – Link & FAQs

MillimanReportThe Department of Health and Welfare has released a new report titled “Financial Impacts from Medicaid Expansion in Idaho,” from Milliman Inc. The actuarial firm analyzed the cost impact of expanding Medicaid in the event a voter-initiated ballot measure passes.

The report indicates that Medicaid expansion in a single year (using the second-year costs because it represents the first year of full implementation) would cost the state about $45 million but will also generate about $40 million in state and local fund offsets. The single year net cost to the state will vary year over year, but the net total 10-year cost estimate from state fiscal year 2020-2030 in state funds is $105.1 million, once costs and savings are accounted for.  Continue reading

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Liberty Healthcare is providing free mental health assessments for Idaho children with serious emotional disturbances

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Liberty Healthcare is now providing mental health assessments for children and young adults up to the age of 18, as part of the Youth Empowerment Services (YES) program and the settlement agreement for the Jeff D. lawsuit.

The YES program was created and tasked with transforming mental health for children in Idaho as part of the settlement. As part of that transformation, families of children with serious emotional disturbances and functional impairments may now (as of Jan. 1) be eligible for Medicaid coverage if their income is up to 300 percent of the federal poverty limit. Liberty will provide the necessary initial assessments at no cost to the family seeking YES program eligibility.

If you know of a child who needs mental health services, including respite, please contact Liberty Healthcare at 1-877-305-3469. Learn more here and here.

 

New Medicaid vendor chosen for non-emergency medical transportation

The State of Idaho has chosen a contractor from among four bidders to handle the non-emergency medical transportation needs of Medicaid patients.

Medical Transportation Management, Inc. (MTM) will take over the program March 6, 2018. The existing contractor, Veyo, exercised an early-out provision in its $70 million, three-year contract, citing expensive, unexpected restrictions on its business model that uses independent drivers.

“The Department of Health and Welfare will work with the existing broker, MTM and stakeholders to ensure a smooth transition for our Idaho Medicaid participants and providers,” said Matt Wimmer, administrator of Health and Welfare’s Division of Medicaid.  Continue reading

Supported Living Rates Set Following Comprehensive Survey

Changes to Medicaid’s supported living rates are being finalized following the completion of an intensive cost survey of Idaho providers.  This benefit pays for caregivers to support developmentally disabled adults in their own residence rather than in an institution or in a certified family home.

A group of supported living providers had previously sued the Department of Health and Welfare, contending that rates were too low to support their services.  The 9th Circuit Court enjoined the department to pay a higher rate for these services.  The Office of the Attorney General contested this case up to the United States Supreme Court, which resulted in the landmark Armstrong vs. Exceptional Child Center decision last December that established that providers do not have standing to sue states to increase their reimbursement. Continue reading

DHW committed to helping people live independently

The federal district court recently ruled on a lawsuit involving people with developmental disabilities who receive Medicaid funding to pay for their day-to-day living support. Medicaid’s goal is to provide people with disabilities the supports they need to live as safely and independently as possible in their community, rather than an institution.

Medicaid will pay for up to 15 services directly related to a participant’s developmental disability as well as any services for additional medical needs they may have. Developmental disability services can include such things as 24 hour care so that participants can live in their own home, therapy to help participants develop skills they need to live in the community, non-medical transportation so that they can access and integrate into the community, and other supports that ensure that their homes meet their functional needs. Continue reading