HEALTH

Key HUF 2021 Legislative Priority

Close the Medicaid coverage gap.

Medicaid expansion in Florida would provide coverage for 850,000 Floridians. Medicaid expansion is a quintessential issue that, if a compromise were to be found, would prove beneficial not just for immigrant families, but for all Floridians.

Recommendations:
  • Florida should expand Medicaid, as per the Affordable Care Act, to low-income adults under 133% of the Federal Poverty Line.
  • Support the extension of Medicaid coverage of pregnant women from 60 days post-partum to 12 months.
  • Incorporate Affordable Care Act consumer protections into state law, including protecting Floridians with pre-existing conditions from future price shocks.
  • Support the elimination of the five-year waiting period for pregnant women to access Medicaid via the Immigrant Children’s Health Improvement Act (ICHIA).
  • Support the elimination of the five-year residency in Florida rule for Legal Permanent Residents to access Medicaid.
  • Support the extension of the reasonable opportunity period beyond 90 days for citizenship status verification.

Key HUF 2021 Legislative Priority

Remove barriers to KidCare (CHIP) enrollment.

  • An estimated 300,000 children are eligible but not enrolled. Remove barriers to enrollment: Prohibit “lock out” of households from KidCare if a payment is missed.

Narrow the gap in WIC participation.

More than 400,000 Florida households eligible for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program are not enrolled.

Recommendation:
  • Support and encourage Florida to continue to work with WIC agencies and community-based organizations to ensure that remaining eligible Floridians can apply for WIC.

Reimburse community nonprofits and places of worship for benefit enrollment.

Closure of DCF offices across the state has shifted the state benefit workload to local nonprofits and places of worship and placed financial stress on them.

Recommendation:
  • Establish a certified community partners program that reimburses nonprofits and places of worship for staff time spent enrolling Floridians in DCF and Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) benefit programs.

Require Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) to report on Medicaid managed care quality performance measures disaggregated by race, ethnicity, primary language, sex and disability.

Experts agree that collection of this data is an essential first step for developing targeted strategies to eliminate disparities.