CSG/ERC joins Network for Public Health Law

Joining seventeen prominent groups such as the National Governor’s Association, NCSL and the American Heart Association, CSG/ERC has joined the Network for Public Health Law as a Friend. Funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Network is a non-profit, non-partisan organization working to improve public health law and policy. Like CSG, the Network is organized regionally; the Network’s Eastern Region closely mirrors CSG/ERC states. Network attorneys and researchers provide policymakers with technical assistance, track best practices, and foster collaborations that strengthen the region’s health. Following up on connections at our annual meeting in Delaware this summer, CSG/ERC and the Network’s Eastern region office are collaborating on a variety of joint projects. Eastern region policymakers with questions or input on the region’s health needs are urged to contact the Network for assistance.

Half of remaining CSG/ERC region uninsured eligible for subsidies

A new analysis by the Kaiser Foundation finds that 56% of uninsured residents of the CSG/ERC region are eligible for subsidized coverage. That rate is slightly higher than the US average of 51%. Last month a new Census report found that a million people across the ERC region gained coverage between 2013 and 2014, largely due to expansions under the Affordable Care Act. However over 4.6 million ERC residents are still without coverage. The new Kaiser analysis drills deeper into those numbers finding that half of the remaining uninsured ERC residents are eligible for either Medicaid (38%) or subsides to purchase coverage on the exchange (18%). Unfortunately almost half (43%) of uninsured ERC region residents do not qualify for subsidized coverage either because of income, an employer offer, or immigration status. States have a great opportunity to engage residents and expand health coverage.

  Total uninsured Uninsured eligible for Medicaid Uninsured eligible for insurance subsidies Uninsured not eligible for subsidized coverage
CT 247,000 69,000 62,000 116,000
DE 63,000 22,000 15,000 25,000
ME 121,000 18,000 40,000 39,000
MD 336,000 133,000 43,000 160,000
MA 288,000 93,000 N/A 147,000
NH 94,000 37,000 17,000 41,000
NJ 940,000 335,000 131,000 473,000
NY 1,476,000 548,000 317,000 611,000
PA 994,000 477,000 180,000 338,000
RI 55,000 27,000 13,000 15,000
VT 34,000 8,000 11,000 15,000
ERC total 4,648,000 1,767,000 829,000 1,980,000

NJ conference on Medicaid ACOs – deep commitment to applying lessons learned

A contingent from the CSG/ERC health committee ventured to NJ last week for their 4th Annual Medicaid Payment Reform Summit. The conference was sponsored by the QI Collaborative which is working with the state and private foundations to support accountable care in NJ’s Medicaid program. We heard from Jeff Brenner of the Camden Coalition about their impressive results in serving high-need, high-cost consumers through intensive and culturally appropriate outreach, robust provider collaboration, and strong links to social services. We heard about other effective high-cost, high-need programs from Baltimore, Boston, and New York. We heard from three ACOs that were certified for NJ’s Medicaid program and one that wasn’t but is still working toward accountable care. We heard from Jurgen Unutzer from the Univ. of Washington about what works, and what doesn’t, to effectively integrate behavioral health into primary care. A panel talked about technology innovations that can support effective payment and delivery reforms. Fascinating information from people really doing the work. NJ is a leader in designing thoughtful Medicaid reforms. We learned a lot.