The Administration last week indicated that they are continuing to consider new work requirement waivers for Medicaid. This comes despite a recent court ruling that struck down a waiver for Kentucky for their work requirements. Secretary Alex Azar indicated they are still considering similar state waiver requests.
At the same time the Administration is continuing or restoring the ACA’s risk adjustment program. The multi-billion programs had been suspended. The “risk adjustment program” had been a part of the ACA to help insurers that attract sicker and more expensive customers by offsetting those costs. The Administration rationalized the restoration citing a court ruling invalidating parts of the program.
“Issuers that had expressed concerns about having to withdraw from markets or becoming insolvent should be assured by our actions today,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma said. The ruling was issued mid-week through an interim final rule. The action was praised by Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) saying that not making the payments “would have had a devastating impact and increased health care costs on millions of hardworking Americans.”