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CMS approves Medicaid waivers for 11 states in response to COVID-19 crisis
Late Monday, the CMS announced it was approving Medicaid Section 1135 waivers to 11 states in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The list of states includes Alabama, Arizona, California, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, and Virginia. Last week, the CMS approved COVID-19 related state waivers for Florida and Washington.
Under the waivers, states can temporarily suspend prior authorization requirements, extend existing authorizations for services through the end of the public health emergency, suspend some nursing home pre-admission reviews, ease reimbursement for care delivered in alternative settings due to facility evacuations, and relax provider enrollment requirements to allow states to more quickly enroll out-of-state or other new providers to expand access to care.
"Thanks to the decisive leadership of President (Donald) Trump during this emergency, the CMS has been able to swiftly remove barriers and cut red tape for our state partners," said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. "These waivers give a broad range of states the regulatory relief and support they need to more quickly and effectively care for their most vulnerable citizens."
These section 1135 waivers are effective March 1, 2020 and will end upon termination of the public health emergency, including any extensions, according to the CMS.
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