What is Medicaid Unwinding?
Starting in April, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will start checking if people who have Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) eligibility still qualify. This process is known as “Medicaid Unwinding,” and it can have a significant impact on those who rely on these programs for their healthcare needs.
According to some estimates, up to 15 million people could lose their current Medicaid or CHIP coverage when states resume these reviews. To lower the number of people affected, CMS is working with states and other stakeholders to let people know about renewing their coverage and exploring other available health insurance options.
What You Need to Do
If you are currently enrolled in Medicaid or CHIP, it’s important to take note of these changes and make sure your coverage is not interrupted. Here are some steps you can take:
- Make sure your address is up to date. Check that your state has your current contact information so they can contact you regarding your Medicaid or CHIP coverage.
- Check your mail. Your state will mail you a letter about your Medicaid or CHIP coverage, which may include a renewal form to see if you still qualify for the program. If you receive a renewal form, fill it out and return it to your state right away to avoid any gaps in your coverage.
- Explore other options. If you or a family member no longer qualify for Medicaid or CHIP, consider buying a health plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace. These plans are affordable and comprehensive, covering essential health benefits such as prescription drugs, doctor visits, urgent care, and hospital visits.
Knowing where you stand
As CMS moves forward with Medicaid unwinding, it’s important for you to understand the upcoming changes and take the necessary steps to maintain their coverage. The process will occur in two phases: First, preparing for the renewal process and educating beneficiaries about the changes. And second, ensuring that they take the necessary steps to renew coverage and transition to other coverage if they are no longer eligible for Medicaid or CHIP.
To prepare for the renewal process, CMS will be reaching out via several ways such as direct mail, email, and Medicaid portals. Healthcare providers and clinics, state or local health departments, social services, the Social Security Administration, disability benefits, and managed care health plan issuers can also reach out. This is why it’s so important to update your contact information.
If you’re unsure about the status of your coverage, contact your local Medicaid or CHIP office for assistance. They can help you understand the changes and what steps you need to take to maintain your coverage. If you no longer qualify, they can help you find other health insurance options.
At Hunter Health, we’re committed to helping our patients understand and navigate the ongoing changes to Medicaid and CHIP. If you have any questions or concerns about Medicaid unwinding, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for assistance. We’ll do everything we can to help ensure that you have access to quality, affordable healthcare.