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Congress sets April 1, 2023, as the official start date for Medicaid eligibility renewals
Ohio Medicaid to resume regular eligibility operations and encourages enrollees to update their contact information.
Congress sets April 1, 2023, as the official start date for Medicaid eligibility renewals

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) Director Maureen Corcoran today is encouraging Ohio’s Medicaid members to take necessary steps to ensure continued health coverage for themselves and their families and allow for a smooth transition as federally mandated changes in eligibility are set to begin on April 1, 2023.

“Now that the federal government has announced this change, all Ohio Medicaid members will have their eligibility re-determined and if found ineligible, disenrolled from the program for the first time in three years,” said Director Corcoran. “Our goals are to ensure that Medicaid eligible Ohioans will have the tools they need to maintain their healthcare coverage and not risk a gap in service, and that Ohioans no longer eligible for Medicaid can smoothly transition to other affordable healthcare options.”

It is critical that Medicaid members keep their contact information up-to-date and respond to all requests for information. Ohio’s unwinding will occur over a 12-month period of time. Some renewals will be automatic based on extensive data comparisons while other members will receive the usual eligibility packet and work with their county department of job and family services to complete it manually. In alignment with previous department policy, children under the age of 19 retain their coverage for twelve months from the date of their initial eligibility determination or most recent renewal.

To assist members, providers and stakeholders prepare for this process, the ODM has a dedicated webpage that houses information on the renewal process, key steps consumers should take, key message, frequently asked questions and other additional resources. Individuals are also encouraged to reach out to their county department of job and family services (CDJFS) with any questions or they can use Medicaid’s eligibility tool on our website to check their eligibility status. Since late 2020, Ohio Medicaid has been planning for the end of continuous eligibility, partnering with state and local government agencies, provider organizations, Medicaid managed care organizations and consumer advocacy groups. ODM also put in place several tools to improve and prepare for the renewal process including:

  •  Enhancing county funding and training.
  •  Leveraging federal temporary waiver flexibilities.
  •  Improving ex parte renewals and other significant information technology improvements.
  •  Using multiple communication methods to reach and inform members of pending renewals and timelines.
  •  Streamlining and improving systems operations.
  •  Prioritizing caseworker responsibilities to individuals found “likely ineligible.”
  •  Creating an “unwinding partner toolkit” for provider and consumer groups to reach members with consistent messaging and inform them of steps needed to keep their healthcare coverage.
  •  Synchronizing SNAP and Medicaid eligibility renewals.

In March 2020, Congress passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which among other things, provided states with enhanced federal matching dollars for their Medicaid programs. In exchange for these dollars, states were prohibited from disenrolling members from Medicaid, even if they were found to be ineligible. This was to ensure members did not lose vital healthcare coverage during the pandemic. Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act in December, decoupling the end of the federal public health emergency from the continuous coverage requirement.