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Pennsylvania Health Law Project Newsletter

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has published its May newsletter.  Included in this edition are articles on new criteria for Medicaid coverage of high-cost hepatitis C drugs and the release of a draft of the state’s proposed Medicaid quality strategy; an update on Community HealthChoices, Pennsylvania’s new program of Medicaid managed long-term services and supports; an overview of Medicaid-covered behavioral health services; a summary of recent federal proposals with implications for the state’s Medicaid program; and a report on the nomination of Teresa Miller to lead the new Department of Health and Human Services that Governor Wolf has proposed establishing.  Find the newsletter here.

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid, Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy

Pennsylvania Health Law Project Newsletter

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has published its February 2017 newsletter. Included in this edition are stories about: the potential implications of turning Medicaid into a block grant program the governor’s proposed FY 2018 budget a new federal requirement that hospitals must inform Medicare patients if they are designated as hospitalized under “observation status” counseling services available through PA LINKs Find the latest edition of PA Health Law News here.

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy, Pennsylvania proposed FY 2018 budget

Pennsylvania Health Law Project Newsletter

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has published its October 2016 newsletter. Included in this edition are stories about problems older adults are encountering when they seek to enroll in the state’s Aging Waiver program; an update on the implementation of Community HealthChoices, the new state program of managed long-term services and supports for qualified seniors; upcoming Medicare changes and enrollment and application deadlines; coverage of diabetes testing supplies for dual eligibles; new state guidelines addressing access to treatment for mental health conditions and substance abuse disorders; and more. Go here for the latest edition of PA Health Law News.  

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy

Federal Medicaid Per Capita Spending Limits?

As they have in the past, some members of Congress have suggested of late that Medicaid might benefit from being transformed into a program with limited spending per capita: that is, such an approach would limit the amount of money the federal government would provide to states on a per capita basis. Such an approach would almost certainly have serious implications for Pennsylvania safety-net hospitals. What issues would need to be addressed to develop such an approach? What data would be needed? Earlier this year the chairmen of the Senate Finance Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee asked the U.S. Government Accountability Office to answer these and other questions. Now, the GAO has published its answers in a new … Read More

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania safety-net hospitals

Pennsylvania Health Law Project Newsletter

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has published its June 2016 newsletter. Included in this edition are stories about the delay in implementation of the state’s Community HealthChoices program of managed long-term services and supports for the dually eligible; challenges for those seeking home and community-based services from state waiver programs; and more. Find the newsletter here.

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid, Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy

SNAP Comments on Proposed Medicaid Observation Care Payment

The Safety-Net Association of Pennsylvania has written to the state’s Department of Human Services about DHS’s proposal to establish a payment policy for hospital observation services covered by the state’s Medicaid fee-for-service program. While SNAP has long supported the concept of a Medicaid fee-for-service rate for observation services and welcomes DHS’s decision to create such a rate and associated policies, it expressed a number of concerns about DHS’s proposal, including about: the proposed observation rate the classification of observation care as an outpatient service the manner in which the state proposes financing observation care program integrity issues To learn more about SNAP’s concerns, see its entire comment letter to DHS here, on the SNAP web site.

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid, Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy

Pennsylvania Health Law Project Releases Monthly Newsletter

The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has published the May 2016 edition of Health Law News, its monthly newsletter. Included in this edition are articles about a new federal managed care regulation and federal policy governing balance billing of dual-eligible (Medicare- and Medicaid-covered) individuals. The newsletter also takes a look at Pennsylvania one year after the state expanded its Medicaid program and offers an update on Community HealthChoices, the new program of managed long-term services and supports the state intends to implement. Find the latest edition of Health Law News here.

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy

PA Proposes Medicaid Observation Rate

Under a newly proposed policy, Pennsylvania would pay hospitals and physicians an observation rate for Medicaid patients who are treated in their emergency departments but for whom they cannot make an immediate decision on the need for admission. As described in a Pennsylvania Bulletin notice published last Saturday, Observation services are a well-defined set of clinically appropriate and medically necessary services, which include short-term treatment, assessment and reassessment, that are furnished while a decision is made as to whether to admit an MA beneficiary to the inpatient hospital setting for further treatment or to discharge the MA beneficiary from the hospital outpatient setting. The Department is recognizing the need for observation services because a physician may not be able to … Read More

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy

New Tools for Addressing Old Medicaid Problems

The new federal Medicaid managed care regulation gives state Medicaid programs new tools with which to address longstanding Medicaid challenges. In an article titled “The Medicaid Managed Care Rule: The Major Challenges States Face,” the Commonwealth Fund describes the tools the rule does and does not offer for addressing five major Medicaid challenges: reaching medically underserved communities unstable eligibility and enrollment organizing coverage an care and developing effective payment incentives aligning managed care with health, education, nutrition, and social services information technology Find the article here, on the Commonwealth Fund’s web site.

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy

Feds Propose New Medicaid Managed Care Regs

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has proposed its first major changes in regulations governing Medicaid managed care in more than a decade. In a 653-page draft regulation published on Monday, CMS proposes imposing a medical-loss ratio on Medicaid managed care plans; establishing new standards for adequate provider networks; partially lifting the ban on payments to institutions for mental diseases; pursuing greater transparency in rate-setting; and new quality initiatives that mirror those of Medicare and the federal marketplace. In addition, the proposed regulation calls for new marketing guidelines for Medicaid managed care plans, improved access to information for Medicaid beneficiaries, and new program integrity measures.  It also proposes better aligning the governance of CHIP with Medicaid, new requirements … Read More

Posted in Pennsylvania Medicaid laws and regulations, Pennsylvania Medicaid policy, Pennsylvania safety-net hospitals
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2012 Safety-Net Association of Pennsylvania