Critics are mobilizing against the screening and testing requirement because they say it could unfairly stigmatize the poor and complicate an already difficult application process. News outlets also report on Medicaid news from Arkansas and Ohio.
Wisconsin Seeks To Mandate Drug Tests For Medicaid Recipients
Low-income residents seeking government help in Wisconsin often slog through a frustrating, outdated bureaucracy at a run-down state building in Milwaukee, enduring a process that generates complaints about the difficulties of signing up for food assistance, unemployment benefits, and Medicaid. Now, in a first-in-the-nation experiment, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker plans to raise the bar higher for people seeking Medicaid, with an expansive program of mandatory drug screening, testing, and treatment as a condition of receiving benefits. (Herndon, 4/25)
Legislature Set To Tackle Changes To “Arkansas Works” Medicaid Expansion In Special Session
KNWA’s Curt Lanning reports that Rep. DeAnn Vaught, chair of the House Management Committee, sent an email to legislators stating that the legislature will likely immediately reconvene for a special session focusing on health care after adjourning sine die on May 1. The governor is expected to call the special session to get legislative approval of his proposed alterations to the private option (now known as “Arkansas Works”) — the state’s unique version of Medicaid expansion, which uses Medicaid funds to purchase health insurance for low-income Arkansans. (Ramsey, 4/24)
Cleveland Plain Dealer:
Ohio Nursing Homes Ask Lawmakers To Delay Medicaid Changes For Long-Term Care Patients
Ohio’s nursing home lobby is pushing back on proposed budget changes that would make managed care health plans, rather than nursing homes, responsible for overseeing the care of 150,000 Ohioans on Medicaid. Currently, nursing homes and assisted living centers take responsibility for ensuring all aspects of a patient’s care, both in and out of the facility, and bill Medicaid directly for services. (Borchardt, 4/24)
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.