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PNS Daily Newscast - September 20, 2019 


A whistleblower complaint against President Trump sets off tug-of-war between Congress and the White House; and students around the world strike today to demand action on climate change.

2020Talks - September 20, 2019. (3 min.)  


Climate change is a big issue this election season, and global climate strikes kick off, while UAW labor strikes continue.

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New Report Cautions on NH Medicaid Work Requirement Rollout

New Hampshire work requirements for Medicaid recipients will affect most age groups, including many parents. (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development/Wikimedia Commons)
New Hampshire work requirements for Medicaid recipients will affect most age groups, including many parents. (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development/Wikimedia Commons)
January 14, 2019

CONCORD, N.H. – Policy groups are hopeful state lawmakers will learn from Arkansas' mistakes as work requirements for the New Hampshire Medicaid program are implemented this year.

A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explains that nearly 17,000 Medicaid beneficiaries in Arkansas already have lost coverage since the state implemented its work requirements six months ago.

Jennifer Wagner, a senior policy analyst with the center, says that's more than 20 percent of people subject to the new policy.

"It exceeds the 15 percent coverage loss Kentucky projected would result from its waiver by the fifth year,” she points out. “And the 6 to 17 percent coverage loss Kaiser Family Foundation forecasted could have resulted from a nationwide implementation of work requirements."

Wagner says working people and those who should be exempt are among those losing coverage because of new paperwork requirements and bureaucratic red tape.

New Hampshire is expected to roll out its work requirements for Medicaid in March.

New Hampshire officials are making efforts to educate Medicaid recipients about the new changes to avoid some of the losses Arkansas experienced.

This includes spending nearly $90,000 on a telemarketing campaign to reach those on Medicaid in New Hampshire.

But Aviva Aron-Dine, vice president for health policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, is skeptical this will be enough – particularly because more people will be excluded from work exemptions in New Hampshire than in Arkansas.

"New Hampshire is including some of those older people, including the younger people, including a subset of parents, and talking about going out to its entire caseload on March 1,” she explains. “Had Arkansas done those things, its coverage loss could have been multiple times what we actually saw."

In Arkansas, recipients 50 and older are exempt from the work requirement, which is 80 hours a month.

In New Hampshire, meanwhile, it applies to Medicaid enrollees up to age 65, and the work requirement is 100 hours a month.

Laura Rosbrow-Telem, Public News Service - NH