In response to the pandemic, Congress granted qualifying states additional federal Medicaid funding through the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) on the condition that Medicaid programs allow people to stay continuously enrolled through the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE). However, in December 2022, the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) was signed into law, de-linking the additional funding and continuous enrollment provision from the PHE and ending continuous enrollment on March 31, 2023. The CAA will also gradually reduce the additional Medicaid funding granted through the FFCRA, ending it in December 2023. As a result of this “unwinding,” the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is mandating states to return to pre-COVID Medicaid operations and re-determine Medicaid eligibility. It is estimated that nearly 18 million enrollees across the nation will lose their Medicaid coverage due to the unwinding process. Under the new CMS guidance, state agencies must make a good faith effort to inform individuals of their Medicaid status, which includes sending paper-based communication to members of programs such as Medicaid and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). State agencies must ensure compliance with these requirements, and should invest in solutions that will add value going forward to improve engagement and quality of enrollee data.
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