HCFA State Plan Approvals and Income Disregards
     April 28, 1998
     Today HCFA announced its approval of Missouri's State 
     Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) plan, the twelfth 
     such plan to be approved.  Missouri's program expands 
     insurance coverage to children using the state's existing 
     Medicaid managed care program, MC+.  By using traditional 
     state flexibility to employ income disregards in determining 
     Medicaid eligibility for children, the program will cover 
     children in families with gross incomes up to 300% of the 
     federal poverty level ($40,950 for a family of three).
     Yesterday, Connecticut became the eleventh state to win HCFA 
     approval. Connecticut will use its new allocation to both 
     expand its Medicaid program and create a new program. 
     Renamed as Part A of the state's new HUSKY program, Medicaid 
     will expand to include children ages 14 through 18 with 
     household incomes of up to 185% of the federal poverty level 
     ($25,253 a year for a family of three.)  Previously, the 
     Medicaid program covered children only up to age 13 in 
     families with incomes up to 185%.
     The new non-Medicaid program (Part B of HUSKY) will cover 
     children up to age 18 in families with incomes, calculated 
     by the state, up to 235% of poverty.  However, as is the 
     case for Missouri, Connecticut will apply an income 
     disregard-- setting aside certain types of income the family 
     may have-- effectively bringing coverage to 300% of poverty. 
     HUSKY Part B covers commercial benefits. However, children 
     with special physical or behavioral health needs who qualify 
     for HUSKY Part B will receive additional services under a 
     third part of the program, HUSKY Plus.
     HCFA also approved yesterday New Jersey's plan, which 
     creates NJKidCare.  The program will include expanded and 
     renamed Medicaid coverage and a new state CHIP plan.  Now 
     termed NJKidCare Part A, Medicaid will cover children 
     through age 18 whose families have incomes at or below 133 
     percent of poverty.  The state estimates that an additional 
     34,000 children will be added to the Medicaid program in the 
     first year.  The separate state program -- NJKidCare Parts B 
     and C -- will be targeted toward children in families with 
     incomes between 133 and 200% of poverty (200% of poverty 
     equals $27,300 a year for a family of three).  Except for a 
     few service areas, NJKidCare Parts B and C cover Medicaid 
     benefits, using the same managed care organizations that 
     serve children under Part A (the health care program 
     formerly known as Medicaid).
     To date, 12 state plans have been approved by HCFA:  
     Alabama, Colorado, South Carolina, Florida, Ohio, 
     California, Illinois, New York, Michigan, Missouri, New 
     Jersey and Connecticut.
     14 states and Puerto Rico have submitted plans:  
     Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, 
     Oklahoma, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Vermont, Wisconsin, Texas, 
     Utah, Montana and Indiana.
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