Jan 12, 2018

Trump administration OKs first-ever work requirements for Medicaid

President Trump and Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin Photo: SAUL LOEB / AFP / Getty Images

The Trump administration has signed off on the first-ever set of work requirements for Medicaid beneficiaries. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services today approved work requirements proposed by Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin, and is likely to approve additional restrictions in other states relatively soon.

The details: Kentucky will now require adults enrolled in Medicaid to perform 80 hours of “community engagement” per month, with some exceptions. That could include “employment, education, job skills training, and community service,” CMS said in its approval letter.

The requirements apply to all beneficiaries between 19 and 64, with exceptions for pregnant women, people who are considered “medically frail,” primary caregivers and people with acute medical conditions.

People who fail to certify they’ve met those requirements in a given month will have their benefits suspended until they meet the new rules or complete a state-approved education program.

Key quote: “We anticipate that the incentives provided under the demonstration for healthy behaviors and community engagement will promote Medicaid's objective of improving beneficiary health,” CMS told Kentucky.

  • That statement is important because work requirements will almost certainly be challenged in court, on the grounds that they don't align with Medicaid's stated goal of providing health care to low-income people.

Go deeper: New Medicaid rules will face lawsuits almost immediately

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Tariff worries hit record high amid coronavirus outbreak

Data: CivicScience, margin of error ±1 percentage points; Chart: Axios Visuals

Concern about President Trump's tariffs on U.S imports grew to record high levels among Americans last month, particularly as more lost their jobs and concern about the novel coronavirus increased.

Driving the news: About seven in 10 people said they were at least somewhat concerned about tariffs in March, according to the latest survey from CivicScience provided first to Axios.

U.S. coronavirus updates: Largest 24-hour spike in fatalities

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

New York's death toll from the novel coronavirus surged to its highest one-day total on Tuesday, as the U.S. saw its largest 24-hour spike in fatalities, per Johns Hopkins data. Recorded deaths across the U.S. surpassed 12,900 early Wednesday.

Why it matters: State officials have stressed that lockdowns must continue even if cities begin to see slight improvements from social distancing. Several hot spots, including New York, New Orleans, and Detroit, are expected to peak in the coming days.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12:30 a.m. ET: 1,430,453 — Total deaths: 82,133 — Total recoveries: 301,385Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 12:30 a.m. ET: 399,081 — Total deaths: 12,907 — Total recoveries: 22,461Map.
  3. Federal government latest: Acting Navy secretary resigns over handling of virus-infected ship — Trump removes watchdog overseeing rollout of $2 trillion coronavirus bill — Trump said he "didn't see" memos from his trade adviser Peter Navarro warning that the crisis could kill more than half a million Americans.
  4. States latest: California Gov. Gavin Newsom is confident that more than 200 million masks will be delivered to the state "at a monthly basis starting in the next few weeks."
  5. Business latest: America's food heroes in times of the coronavirus crisis. Even when the economy comes back to life, huge questions for airlines will remain.
  6. World updates: China reopens Wuhan after 10-week coronavirus lockdown.
  7. 2020 latest: Polls for Wisconsin's primary elections closed at 9 p.m. ET Tuesday, but results won't be released until April 13. Thousands of residents cast ballots in person.
  8. 1 Olympics thing: About 6,500 athletes who qualified for the Tokyo Games will keep their spots in 2021.
  9. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  10. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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