CHA News Article

MACPAC Report Calls for Extended CHIP Funding, Better Targeting of DSH Payments

Earlier this week, the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC) issued its annual report to Congress on Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). MACPAC’s analysis examined federal Medicaid disproportionate share hospital (DSH) payments, finding that — although total hospital uncompensated care for Medicaid and uninsured patients fell by about $4.6 billion between 2013-14 — hospitals that serve the greatest share of low-income patients would have experienced negative margins without DSH payment supplements. In the report, the commission studied several approaches to better target DHS payments to appropriate hospitals, including changes to utilization thresholds, and also examined how states monitor Medicaid beneficiaries’ access to care. MACPAC further called on Congress to extend CHIP funding an additional five years, through fiscal year 2022. According to the commission, not renewing CHIP funding would result in many of the children it covers becoming uninsured or paying significantly more for private coverage.