In Shift, Trump Administration Backs Court Ruling to Overturn the Entire ACA
Justice Department lawyers recently wrote to an appeals court to express support for a federal judge's ruling that the entire Affordable Care Act (ACA) should be overturned. This legal position was a shift from the Trump administration's prior argument that only certain elements of the ACA, including its protections for people with pre-existing conditions, should be struck down. Twenty GOP-led states originally brought the lawsuit, Texas v. United States, arguing that the entire ACA should be struck down, because Congress eliminated the penalty for not having health insurance. A group of Democratic-led states is challenging the ruling in the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Bill to Reduce Maternal & Infant Deaths Reintroduced in House, Senate
Policymakers recently reintroduced a bill in the House and Senate to reduce maternal and infant mortality in the United States. Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Rep. Robin Kelly (D-Ill.) led the reintroduction of the Mothers and Offspring Mortality and Morbidity Awareness (MOMMA) Act. Among other things, the bill would: 1.) Require the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to provide technical assistance and issue best practices to states regarding maternal mortality reporting; 2.) Authorize $10 million per year for five years to carry out the Alliance for Innovation in Maternal Health Grant Program; 3.) Extend Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) eligibility for pregnant and postpartum women from 60 days postpartum to one year postpartum; and 4.) Authorize $14 million per year for five years to award grants to perinatal quality collaboratives. AMCHP endorsed this legislation.
Impact of U.S. District Judge James Boasberg's Ruling on Medicaid Work Requirements
As you may have heard, on March 27, a federal judge struck down Medicaid work requirements in Arkansas and Kentucky. In Arkansas, the portal used for the collection of work hours has been shut down, and no one else will be removed from the program for noncompliance. Additionally, Arkansas is now required to provide 90 days of retroactive coverage instead of 30 days. The ruling also prevents implementation of proposed work requirements in Kentucky.