CMS Extending Funding for States to Improve Enrollment Processes  

By Liz Hagan

Part of the Affordable Care Act’s mission was to create processes that would make it easier for consumers to enroll in health coverage. And we know that states and the federal government are working diligently to make that goal a reality. As part of the Department of Health and Human Services’ role in this, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that they are extending funding opportunities for states to further improve their enrollment systems.

In the announcement, CMS said that they will soon propose regulations to permanently extend so-called “90/10 funding,” allowing states to receive a 90 percent federal match to update their Medicaid eligibility and enrollment systems. CMS also announced a three-year funding extension allowing states to receive funding to develop eligibility systems integrated among health and human services programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) (this funding is provided through an A87 cost allocation waiver).

These funding extensions are welcome news, especially as we continue to see the value in having efficient, reliable enrollment systems. Although most states have already taken advantage of these funding opportunities since they first became available, states now have more time to fully realize their potential. We hope that even more states see the value in these improvements and work to make health coverage enrollment as easy and seamless a process as possible.

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