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  • CMS Approves Obama-Rejected Kansas Waiver Modern Healthcare by Virgil Dickson — The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has reversed course and approved Kansas' Medicaid waiver that was denied by the Obama administration. CMS has signed off on a one-year extension of the state's KanCare program, which allows the state to have most of its Medicaid population, including those needing long-term care services, in a managed-care plan. The program was on track to expire Dec. 31.…CMS denied the extension request during the Obama administration over concerns that managed-care organizations had inadequate state oversight. The federal agency also said the state hadn't responded to public comments on the waiver, and there wasn't sufficient information about provider networks.

  • Maine's Medicaid Vote a Test of Obamacare Support Governing by Mattie Quinn — The Maine Legislature has voted to expand Medicaid five times in the last five years. But every time the bill reached GOP Gov. Paul LePage's desk, he vetoed it. So advocates of expanding Medicaid decided to go straight to voters. They collected enough signatures to put the issue to voters in November.  If passed, the state would become the 33rd to expand Medicaid and signal support for former President Obama's signature health-care law at a time when President Trump is taking major steps to reverse it.

  • Report: Medicaid Enrollments, Costs Begin to Stabilize Associated Press by Christina A. Cassidy — States are seeing more stability in their Medicaid programs after experiencing a surge in enrollment and costs associated with the Affordable Care Act, suggesting that one of the major pillars of former President Barack Obama's health overhaul may be nearing its peak. At the same time, they are experiencing a high level of uncertainty as Republicans in Congress continue to advocate for a major overhaul of a program that provides health insurance to tens of millions of lower-income and disabled Americans. Thursday's report by the Kaiser Family Foundation found Medicaid enrollments in the states slowed considerably to an increase of just 2.7 percent in fiscal year 2017. By comparison, states reported a 13.9 percent increase in enrollment during fiscal year 2015 following implementation of former President Barack Obama's health care law.

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