Week in Washington

Week in Washington is brought to you by Michael Cohen, PhD. Tune in each week to read the latest on healthcare policy and get a glimpse of what’s on the horizon

Week in Washington

5/12/2022

Public Health Emergency (PHE)

CMS/HHS reiterated that it would provide the 60 days’ notice before ending the PHE in a letter to governors. With the current PHE ending in July, it would mean that HHS would need to announce an end to the PHE on Monday, May 16th.

Given the potential end of the PHE, Kaiser Family Foundation released new analysis on the effect of the impact of ending of the PHE on Medicaid.

  • Overall, they estimated Medicaid enrollment will grow by 25% from 2019 through the end of FY 2022 (which represents an increase of 22.2 million enrollees).
    •  Baseline growth accounts for approximately 3.5 million of the enrollment growth while the MOE continuous enrollment requirement accounts for 18.7 million. 
  • Over the three-year period from FY 2020 through FY 2022, we estimate that states will have received approximately $100.4 billion in fiscal relief due to the enhanced FMAP, which is more than double the total estimated state costs due to the additional MOE enrollees ($47.2 billion).
  • The number of Medicaid enrollees disenrolled in FY 2023 — assuming the continuous enrollment requirement ends August 1 — will likely vary by state and eligibility group. Based on illustrative scenarios, we project enrollment losses in FY 2023 could range from 5.3 million to 14.2 million enrollees.

Prescription drug rebates

New research found that drug rebates increased in the Commercial Market (specifically between 2015 and 2019).

Inflation

While overall inflation rose 8.3%, lower than March’s headline number of 8.5% number, core inflation (which excludes volatile energy and food) was higher. The report underscores that the Federal Reserve is all but assured to continue increasing interest rates. It also highlights that real earnings have declined due to inflation.

Covid

The new Omicron subvariant B.2.12.1 is leading to an increase in cases and hospitalizations, especially in the Northeast.

Previous editions: 

05/05/2022: Week in Washington

04/28/2022: Week in Washington

04/21/2022: Week in Washington

04/07/2022: Week in Washington

03/31/2022: Week in Washington

03/24/2022: Week in Washington

03/17/2022: Week in Washington

03/10/2022: Week in Washington

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