Posts Tagged ‘expansion’

State Medical Association Supports Expansion Of Medicaid Eligibility Under Affordable Care Act

By Sean Whaley | 1:35 pm September 13th, 2012

CARSON CITY – The Nevada State Medical Association has announced it supports expanding Nevada’s Medicaid caseload as permitted under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

The association’s board of directors met on Sept. 8 and adopted the policy statement, which was based on the information currently available about the expansion of the Medicaid program.

Photo by Debora Cartagena/CDC.

“We believe that this is necessary to assure that there is not a new class of uninsured Nevadans created by a gap in the PPACA coverage plan,” said the statement by the association, released Wednesday.

“Nevada physicians are concerned that this does not improve the current Medicaid program, which is significantly underfunded,” the statement said. “Current payment levels have made it increasingly difficult for physicians and hospitals to maintain their availability for Medicaid patients. This has become particularly true for children with disabling conditions or chronic illnesses and for women facing high-risk births.”

As a result, the association said it is urging Gov. Brian Sandoval and the Legislature to “address the access to care needs of the patients who are, and will continue to be, covered by the current Medicaid program.”

The Nevada State Medical Association is Nevada’s oldest and largest physician advocacy organization.

The authorized Medicaid expansion is still under review by the Sandoval Administration. If recommended by Sandoval and approved by the Legislature in 2013, it would take effect on Jan. 1, 2014 for Nevadans up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level. The potential caseload expected under such an expansion is still being analyzed.

Federal funding would pay for 100 percent of any Medicaid expansion for the first three calendar years beginning in 2014, with the state required to pick up a percentage of the cost beginning in 2017. The first year state cost is 5 percent, in 2018 the state cost is 6 percent, in 2019 the state cost is 7 percent, and in 2020, the state cost is 10 percent.

The expansion in Nevada would mostly cover childless adults who are not covered by the state program now.

Nevada is already moving forward with its Silver State Health Insurance Exchange, which will offer eligible residents the opportunity to purchase health insurance beginning on Oct. 1, 2013.

Meanwhile, data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows that Nevada’s uninsured population continues to increase. While the rate nationally declined by 0.5 percent to 16 percent between 2008-09 and 2010-11, Nevada’s rate increased 2.7 percent in that same time period, to 22 percent.

Federal Agency Says States Can Expand, Later Reduce Medicaid Under ACA

By Sean Whaley | 12:26 pm August 7th, 2012

CARSON CITY – States do not face any deadline for deciding whether to expand their Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act, and will be able to expand coverage and then later chose to reduce it, federal officials told Governing magazine on Monday.

Cindy Mann, deputy director for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, made the comments at a National Conference of State Legislatures meeting in Chicago.

Photo by Debora Cartagena/CDC.

The article by Dylan Scott with Governing magazine also had comments from a CMS spokesperson confirming that states can chose to expand eligibility and later choose to reduce it, the first public confirmation that CMS will make such an option available.

Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval is still assessing whether to expand Nevada’s Medicaid eligibility as a result of the June ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court upholding most of the federal health care law. The court struck down the provision allowing the federal government to penalize states if they did not opt into the Medicaid expansion.

The optional expansion to cover those at 133 percent of the poverty level is set to take effect Jan. 1, 2014.

Sandoval’s initial comment was that the state could not afford to undertake any expansion under the law. But he is awaiting additional information and clarification from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services before deciding how to proceed.

Federal funding will pay for 100 percent of any Medicaid expansion for the first three calendar years beginning in 2014, with the state required to pick up a percentage of the cost beginning in 2017. The first year state cost is 5 percent, in 2018 the state cost is 6 percent, in 2019 the state cost is 7 percent, and in 2020, the state cost is 10 percent.

The expansion in Nevada would mostly cover childless adults, who are not covered by the state program now. The other expansion will come from parent caretakers of children who are covered at 75 percent of poverty now, according to Mike Willden, director of the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services.

Willden said last month there are also administrative costs to the state that are not fully covered by the expansion but instead are shared between the federal government and the state at a 50-50 match. They include information technology costs and the cost to hire new eligibility workers, for example, he said.

Willden said in May  that as many as 150,000 additional Nevadans would be eligible for Medicaid if the law was upheld by the court, but that estimate was two years old and was made before the court said states could opt out of the expansion.

He estimated that bringing new residents onto the rolls would cost the state general fund an estimated $574 million between now and 2020.

But only $63 million of that cost estimate was due to the Medicaid expansion. The rest was due to those Nevadans who are already eligible for Medicaid but who have not enrolled. This population is expected to enroll in the program as a result of the mandate to obtain insurance.

 

Nevada Gets $3.4 Million Federal Grant To Expand Boulder City Veterans Cemetery

By Nevada News Bureau Staff | 4:39 pm September 26th, 2011

CARSON CITY – Gov. Brian Sandoval today announced that Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki has informed him that Nevada has been awarded a $3.4 million grant to cover the entire allowable cost of expanding the Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City.

Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Boulder City.

“I am proud of the work Executive Director Caleb Cage and the Office of Veteran Services did in securing this grant for our state’s veterans,” Sandoval said. “The grant will allow Nevada to continue to provide dignified service to Nevada veterans and their dependents.”

The grant will fund the construction of an administration building, roads, a committal shelter, cremains burial areas, landscaping and supporting infrastructure. Developing approximately 17.3 acres, the construction will include 4,801 cremains burial plots.

“Thanks to the pride our excellent staff takes in honoring our fallen heroes, the Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery is one of the finest in the nation,” Cage said. “We are extremely grateful to the National Cemetery Administration for recognizing the caliber of our cemetery by investing in our future in this way.”

The closest national cemetery is Veterans Affairs Riverside National Cemetery in Riverside, Calif., approximately 245 miles away. The closest state cemetery is the Northern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Fernley, approximately 439 miles away.