The state of Arizona will suspend implementation of its Medicaid work requirements, and other proposed changes to the program. Citing the changing landscape and ongoing lawsuits against other states’ work requirements, Arizona decided to delay its community engagement policy that was supposed to go into effect after January 1, 2020. The state’s program is known as Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) Works.
Arizona would have required about 120,000 low-income adults who are not disabled and between the ages of 18 and 49 to report at least 80 hours per month of employment, educational activity, job search or training, or volunteer community service to keep their Medicaid benefits. The Section 1115 waiver also included premiums and cost-sharing.
As did others, the state said the requirement was based on how employment positively affects health and well-being. According to Heidi Capriotti, media relations and public information officer for AHCCCS, the state’s Medicaid program remains committed to moving forward with its work requirements and is waiting to see how litigation over similar requirements plays out before moving forward.
Founded in 1982, the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System is Arizona’s Medicaid program, a federal health care program jointly funded by the federal and state governments for individuals and families who qualify based on income level. Built on a system of competition and choice, the program is a $14 billion program that operates under an integrated managed care model, through a Research and Demonstration 1115 Waiver. Contracted health plans coordinate and pay for physical and behavioral health care services delivered by more than 80,000 health care professionals to 1.8 million Arizonans. The mission is to reach across Arizona to provide comprehensive, quality health care to those in need.
This was reported by Modern Healthcare on October 18. 2019.
Contact information: Heidi Capriotti, Media Relations and Public Information Officer, Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, 801 East Jefferson Street, Phoenix, Arizona 85034; 602-417-4729; Email: Heidi.Capriotti@azahcccs.gov; Website: www.azahcccs.gov