Medicaid Renewals Resuming: The Information Gap

Blank jigsaw puzzle being put together.Recent findings show an information gap among Medicaid recipients regarding the need to re-enroll for benefits after the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) ends. Medicaid recipients are inconsistently informed about the end of the PHE and its effect on their health insurance benefits in terms of the amount of information they have and where they receive their information. 

The PHE has been extended several times. The latest extension expires on January 11, 2023, with a 60-day notice before the end of the PHE.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act

Congress enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) in March 2020. The FFCRA prohibits states from disenrolling Medicaid recipients until the PHE ends. In addition to the ban on disenrollment, the FFCRA stopped the redetermination of eligibility. This kept more than 20 million people covered by health insurance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

When the PHE ends, the FFCRA provisions that keep low-income people insured will end, leaving many people without benefits after the redetermination of eligibility resumes.

Have You Heard About the Public Health Emergency Ending?

Statistically, most people covered by Medicaid do not know that the PHE is coming to an end. The end of the PHE means that Medicaid health insurance benefits will also end. Studies show the following rates of information among Medicaid participants:

  • 62% of Medicaid recipients did not know about the end of the PHE and the need for redetermination.
  • 16.2% of Medicaid enrollees stated that they heard something about the PHE ending but did not have any further information.
  • 15.7% of beneficiaries only knew very little about the end of the PHE and the redetermination of Medicaid benefits.
  • Only 5% of Medicaid recipients reported that they were well-informed about the end of the PHE and the need for the redetermination of benefits.

Information Medicaid Participants Have: Statistics

Medicaid participants are getting information about the end of the PHE and health insurance benefits from the following variety of sources:

  • 34.3% from traditional or social media
  • 24.5% from their health insurance company
  • 30.6% from a state agency
  • 17.8% from their doctor or another health care provider
  • 6.5% from some other source than those listed above

There is a significant information gap among Medicaid participants. The inconsistency of information may lead some Medicaid enrollees to suffer negative consequences, including unexpectedly losing their health insurance coverage.

There is no one person or agency that everyone agrees should inform Medicaid participants about when redetermination resumes. Currently, Medicaid enrollees are responsible for staying updated about the end of the Public Health Emergency.

To stay updated on the end of the PHE and any changes to Medicaid benefits, keep an eye on your state’s Medicaid website, check your mail or email for important correspondence, and visit the website for new information.