News outlets also report on Medicaid developments related to how helping homeless patients saves money for California’s Medicaid Program as well as news about Puerto Rico and congressional funding in the pending omnibus spending bill.

As Missouri Shifts Medicaid Patients To Private Insurers, Critics Say That Puts Patients At Risk

This week, Missouri transferred the state-run health coverage of about 240,000 low-income adults and children to managed care plans run by three companies: WellCare, Centene Corporation and United Health Group. The move is part of an increasing privatization of Missouri’s Medicaid program, MO HealthNet. Legislators call it a cost-saving measure that improves efficiency in health care. Critics say the transfer happened too quickly, putting patient health at risk. (Bouscaren, 5/3)

California Healthline:
To Save On Medi-Cal Costs, A Bid To Help Homeless Patients With Rent Money

Helping homeless Medi-Cal patients afford shelter could curb their frequent emergency room visits and save California millions of dollars a year, state housing and health care advocates say. California lawmakers are considering a measure to devote an additional $90 million in state housing money over five years to subsidize rent for homeless Medi-Cal patients. That money would pay for all or part of the monthly rent for about 1,500 people at any given time during those years, say supporters of the bill. (Bartolone, 5/3)

CQ HealthBeat:
Medicaid, Puerto Rico Funds In Omnibus Won’t Trigger Cuts

The omnibus spending bill contains language that protects federal programs from a potential sequester or across-the-board cuts in two ways, according to congressional aides and budget experts. Mandatory spending that was put into the $1.07 trillion appropriations bill at the request of leadership is exempted from both the pay-as-you go law and a Senate pay-as-you-go rule. That means the mandatory spending — for a retired miners’ health care program and Medicaid in Puerto Rico — would not be added to the PAYGO scorecard administered by the Office of Management and Budget. (Krawzak, 5/2)

KHN also examines coverage options, including Medicaid, for new graduates —

Kaiser Health News:
Mom’s Policy, Medicaid Or A Health Exchange Plan: What’s A Grad To Do?

Like many recent grads, after Maegan Samuel got her bachelor’s degree from Howard University in 2014, she held a series of temporary jobs — day care worker, secretary — before landing a permanent position a year ago working in operations for a nonprofit association of public health programs in the District of Columbia. Yet throughout this unsettled time, there has been one constant she could count on: her mom’s health insurance, which has covered her as a dependent all along. (Andrews, 5/3)

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.