The Biden administration’s decision to rescind a Medicaid waiver for Texas is raising concerns among the 300,000 Texans who receive Medicaid-funded care in their homes.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services sent the state a letter on Friday, stating the waiver was being rescinded because the Trump administration approved it without making Texas go through a public comment period.
Rachel Hammon, executive director of the Texas Association for Home Care and Hospice, told McKnight’s Home Care Daily the association is disappointed by the decision but is confident the state will get an extension on the waiver.
“We look forward to participating in the public comment period and during the process will highlight the critical role of home care and hospice services,” Hammon said.
The waiver provides billions of dollars in federal funding to Texas. Some of that money is used to compensate hospitals for care they provided to the uninsured poor.
Texas has been seeing an influx of retirees in recent years in part because it has no state income tax. Hammon acknowledged those seniors could potentially burden the state’s Medicaid system, which also helps pay for home care and skilled nursing.
“Certainly, bringing in additional dollars to support Medicaid would support additional folks who need that service. Texas does have quite a choice to make right now as to how they are going to approach a waiver that they need to renew because they have been able to pull down some federal dollars through that waiver and innovate some programs,” Hammon said.
In January, the Trump administration extended the Texas waiver 10 years. It was due to expire in September of 2022. Critics have argued that, instead of a waiver, it would make more sense for Texas to simply expand its Medicaid program and provide insurance to the poor.