COVID-19 FAQ Document for State Medicaid and CHIP Agencies

Mary Madison, RN, RAC-CT, CDP
Clinical Consultant – Briggs Healthcare

On Thursday, March 12, 2020, CMS published the initial COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for State Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) Agencies.  This 11-page FAQ are part of the ongoing White House Task Force efforts.

CMS developed a Disaster Response Toolkit that is a longstanding resource that has been available to states and territories on CMS’ website, Medicaid.gov.  States and territories are encouraged to be familiar with this resource as part of their emergency preparedness planning.

“The Trump Administration is actively working with governors to provide flexibility in Medicaid and CHIP programs, so states can respond effectively to this virus,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. “We are especially mindful of our beneficiaries with underlying health conditions that make them more vulnerable. CMS is doing everything in its power to help states eliminate any barriers or delays in their care.

Last week, senior CMS leadership held a call with all state Medicaid agencies, and has been working directly with impacted states and associations to provide guidance and answer questions about existing federal flexibilities.  CMS has invited states to submit questions to CMS through their state leads, which CMS has used to formulate this first set of FAQs.

The FAQs cover a range of topics and issues that reflect questions and concerns raised by state Medicaid and CHIP agencies.  The information highlights the resources available to states, such as the Disaster Preparedness Toolkit developed by CMS specifically for state Medicaid and CHIP agencies, to address a variety of policy and program topics related to eligibility and enrollment, benefits and cost sharing, healthcare workforce, and telehealth.  As questions and issues continue to come into CMS, they will be addressed and answered, and added to these FAQs.”