As Many As 80,000 Maryland Residents Could Lose Medicaid Coverage Starting In April

A doctor fills out paperwork. Screenshot via @mdhealthdept on Instagram.

What’s happening?

As many as 80,000 Maryland residents could lose Medicaid coverage starting in April with the reinstatement of a pre-pandemic federal rule mandating states to verify recipients’ eligibility, Brian Witte reports for the Associated Press. About 1.7 million Marylanders are currently enrolled in Medicaid. 

Who may be considered ineligible under the new rule?

During 2020 and 2021, the state ran a pandemic-related special enrollment period, and the number of residents admitted to the healthcare program soared. Now many of those residents are expected to lose coverage, primarily those who now make too much money to qualify for Medicaid or those who have moved out of the state.

But state health officials said that Maryland is much more equipped to handle eligibility verification than other states due to the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange—a system which handles both Medicaid and other qualified health insurance plans. The benefit exchange, headed by executive director Michele Eberle, has continued to monitor recipients’ qualification and notify residents of their status. 

“We’ve continued to do those redeterminations every single month,” Eberle said. “Now what that means is we didn’t terminate anyone, but we sent them notices. We said if you have a new email address, a new phone, come back, update us, so we’re better off in that we have current information.”

Anything else I should know? 

Health officials plan to direct ineligible residents to Medicare if they qualify or other low-cost insurance plans offered through the Affordable Care Act’s Private Marketplace or their employer. 

You can read more here. 

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