Friday Five – November 17, 2017

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November 17, 2017

In this week’s Friday Five, MAXIMUS is reading about the new HHS nominee, how parent access to Medicaid impacts children’s health, Medicaid buy-ins, the reduction of retroactive Medicaid coverage, and money left on the table by non-expansion states.

1. Who is Alex Azar? Former drugmaker CEO and HHS official nominated to head agency

President Trump has nominated Alex Azar to replace Tom Price as the head of the Department of Health and Human Services. USA Today reports on his background, including stints at Eli Lilly and HHS, and the expectation that his focus would primarily be on cutting healthcare costs.

2. Poor children benefit when parents have access to healthcare

A new study, discussed in this Reuters article, finds that children are more likely to have well-child visits and receive preventative care if their parents qualify for Medicaid, regardless of the child’s insurance status. 

3. Provision in healthcare bill passed by Mass. Senate would allow a ‘Medicaid buy-in’

WBUR interviews a health policy expert about the pros, cons and implications of a Medicaid buy-in after the Massachusetts Senate includes it in a healthcare bill. 

4. Nixing retroactive coverage: The next big trend in state Medicaid waivers?

Iowa recently became the fourth state with an approved Medicaid waiver that shortens the amount of retroactive coverage from the standard three months prior to application. Fierce Healthcare reports the move is expected to reduce costs, but may create financial concerns for both patients and providers.

5. What red states are passing up as blue states get billions

While “blue” states typically subsidize “red” states with tax revenue, the opposite is true when it comes to Medicaid expansion. The New York Times reports that the 18 states that have not expanded Medicaid are expected to give up $180B in federal funds over the next ten years.