The CMS has granted Washington state preliminary approval to overhaul its Medicaid program. As part of the five-year waiver, for which it will receive $1.5 billion in federal funding, the state will launch delivery-system reform initiatives, leverage partnerships between providers and social groups and expand options for long-term services and supports. The “accountable health communities” model aims to address issues such as housing instability and quality, food insecurity, utilities and transportation.
The approval is expected to be finalized in the next few weeks once the state and the CMS hash out special terms and conditions.
State officials applied for the waiver as a way to help address Washington's ballooning Medicaid population, which jumped nearly 60% since 2013 to 1.7 million enrollees, according to federal data. Medicaid spending rose from about $7.8 billion to $10.4 billion during the same period.