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What We're Reading: Utah's Medicaid Expansion Bid; DNA Test Results; CSRs Will Be Paid


Utah Submits Limited Medicaid Expansion Plan

Taking advantage of the Trump administration’s willingness to allow more flexibility in Medicaid expansion programs, Utah has again submitted its plan. According to The Salt Lake Tribune, the plan would cover an additional 6000 of the state’s neediest childless adults who are chronically homeless or need mental health or drug addiction treatment. The proposal also adds work requirements and other limits, such as a lifetime limit on coverage, that the new administration has shown it would be open to allowing.

DNA Tests Have Little Impact on Behavior

Just because people find they are more susceptible to a disease does not mean they will alter their behavior to improve their odds. Consumers have greater access to DNA tests, but these tests don’t take into account other aspects of a person’s life that could increase or decrease risk, reported AP. In addition to genes, diet, exercise, alcohol consumption, smoking habits, and more can all impact disease risk, but research has shown that people who receive DNA information often did not significantly alter their other lifestyle risks.

CSR Payments Will Be Made for August

Just days after the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report on the impact of eliminating the cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments, the Trump administration said it would make the payments for August. The Wall Street Journal reported that the future of these payments is still in question and there are bipartisan efforts underway to come to an agreement on shoring up the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance exchanges by guaranteeing the future of these payments. The CBO report found that getting rid of the CSR payments would increase premiums by 20%, but tax credits would cover that increase for most consumers.

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