Graham-Cassidy bill and Ohio Medicaid

The most recent version of the Republican bill to repeal Obamacare again proposes a block grant model for the State Medicaid programs. The federal funds given to the State Medicaid programs would be based on a per capita amount (i.e. per person). This would be an absolute limit that could not be exceeded. The method for determining this amount is somewhat complicated and I will not attempt to go over that here. However, as I have stated before, the effect on the Ohio Medicaid program would generally be to limit eligibility. An absolute funding ceiling puts pressure on the Ohio Department of Medicaid to find some way to restrict eligibility. Based on my experience, I am sure they will find a way.

One positive change in the Graham-Cassidy bill is that new exceptions are added for the new prohibition of not allowing three months prior retroactivity for Medicaid applications. Presently, an applicant may qualify for eligibility for the three months prior to the month of filing of the application. However, the applicant must have met all eligibility criteria for those prior three months. So they are not getting additional eligibility or anything that they are not entitled to. This just gives applicants some extra time to get the forms filled out and filed. Now they will have to rush to get the application filed or miss out on a month or more of eligibility even though they would have met the eligibility criteria. The new exceptions allow the three month retroactivity for: a) applicants age 65 or older; b) applicants who are blind or disabled. All others will need to rush to get their applications filed by the end of the month.