Thursday, November 30, 2023
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U.S. Congress spending package renews Covid-19 assistance

Washington, Dec 20 (Prensa Latina) The bill to fund U.S government through September 2023 renews the subsidy to fight off the Covid-19 pandemic and includes all-important changes in Medicaid policy, several media report Tuesday.

Among health-related provisions one is aimed at improving the country’s pandemic preparedness after the many shortcomings in the response to Covid 19, The Hill reported.

The new bill, to be voted on this week in Congress, includes changes to improve public health communication and data collection, accelerate vaccine and treatment development, as well as to strengthen oversight by health agencies.

It would also make the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CNC) a Senate-confirmed position. Separately, the Congress spending package includes a provision that would save the government tens of billions of dollars by allowing states to begin weaning people off Medicaid coverage.

In normal times, states can redetermine whether a beneficiary is still eligible for Medicaid at least once a year and remove anyone who no longer qualifies.

But during the pandemic, anyone eligible for Medicaid could remain continuously enrolled and as a result, enrollment increased to record numbers, The Hill noted.

Eliminating Medicaid coverage was top priority for GOPers, but it would also give some certainty to state health officials who never learned when they would have to start reviewing their lists to determine who was no longer eligible for Medicaid.


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