Medicaid Purge to Increase Demand on County Health Departments

80,000 Maryland residents are estimated to lose Medicaid coverage when pandemic era safety nets expire this week.

Individuals and families who no longer qualify for Medicaid are being referred to the state exchange as flexibility enacted during the pandemic is rolled back. Notifications have already begun and will continue to be sent over the full year, in conjunction with the month that coverage started for the recipient. There will be a 45 day period where the recipient can send requested documentation to prove their continuing eligibility.

The Baltimore Banner reports:

The first notices were sent in April, and coverage losses will start as early as June. Marylanders whose income now exceeds eligibility thresholds — set at 138% of the federal poverty level, or $41,400 for a family of four — will be referred to apply for health coverage on the state exchange, where they may still receive income-based subsidies to help with costs, said Ryan Moran, deputy secretary of health care financing and Medicaid director at Maryland Department of Health.

Those who no longer qualify could see a lapse in coverage as well as some who do qualify could miss the window. County health departments can not only provide some services but can help residents navigate accessing coverage via the exchange, subsidies, Medicaid, Medicare, and other outlets. They also offer a range of services when it comes to covering the gaps for those in need by offering prenatal and sexual health services, cancer screenings, dental procedures, immunizations, mental and behavioral health resources, and substance use disorder support.