Continuous-Eligibility Policies Stabilize Medicaid Coverage For Children And Could Be Extended To Adults With Similar Results
Author: Leighton Ku, Erika Steinmetz, Brian K. Bruen
A key method of stabilizing Medicaid coverage is to provide beneficiaries with twelve months of continuous eligibility. Following the passage of the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act in 2009, seven states adopted the continuous-eligibility option for children. That policy change led to a 1.8-percentage-point increase in the average length of child enrollment during fiscal year 2010 and increased annual costs for children by about 2.2 percent. The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission has recommended offering states the option of giving adults twelve-month continuous eligibility for Medicaid. Our findings suggest that continuous eligibility could promote more stable coverage for adults enrolled in Medicaid at a modest cost.