Fifty-two organizations called for a pause in Florida's Medicaid redetermination process after 82% of disenrolled individuals lost coverage for procedural reasons.
Federal policies enacted during the COVID-19 pandemic required states to keep Medicaid recipients enrolled without having to redetermine their eligibility status. This ensured that 5.6 million Floridians — including 2.9 million children — were able to keep their coverage and access critical health care services. However, starting on April 1, 2023, this provision, known as “continuous coverage,” came to an end, meaning that for the first time since 2020, Florida’s Department of Children and Families (DCF) is disenrolling Medicaid recipients who are no longer eligible for their health insurance plans due to income changes that happened between 2020 and 2023.
This unprecedented task is set to be the largest health coverage transition event since the first open enrollment period of the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Statewide and national advocates have raised many concerns about this process and whether our state has the capacity to complete these redeterminations in a way that ensures that eligible Floridians do not lose their coverage, while also ensuring that those who are no longer eligible can be seamlessly transitioned to alternative coverage, such as the Affordable Care Act Marketplace, without gaps in coverage. Many cross-sector organizations and coalitions from across the state of Florida are leveraging each other’s resources to track the outcomes of this process, and raising awareness on behalf of the millions who receive Medicaid. This page serves as a resource for data-sharing and highlighting what is going on in our state.
Florida Policy Institute, in partnership with Florida Health Justice Project, Florida Covering Kids and Families, Florida Voices for Health, and Catalyst Miami formed the Florida Medicaid Continuous Coverage Unwind Collective in spring of 2022. This collective began as a grassroots effort with the expectation that Florida would have to eventually respond to the ending of the continuous coverage provision with a plan for execution. This group of health care advocates and stakeholders possess collective expertise in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), otherwise known in Florida as KidCare. Other areas of knowledge include application and enrollment processes and procedures, the Medicaid coverage gap, health justice, health policy, and health equity, as well as Medicaid and Marketplace navigation. Along with our various extensive networks of partner organizations, we have the knowledge to provide input on the framework of the Medicaid redetermination plan that was eventually made public by the state.
The Florida Medicaid Continuous Coverage Unwind Collective has so far hosted two convenings: one on August 24, 2022, and a second on January 31, 2023, titled Unwinding the Public Health Emergency (PHE): Maximizing Coverage for All Floridians. Our January session can be viewed here. As a result of these convenings, more than 60 organizations and 100 individuals provided their subject-matter expertise to DCF and Florida Healthy Kids Corporation. Our collective partners are currently working with federal health administrative agencies, such as the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), who are also responsible for the implementation and oversight of the Medicaid unwinding process. Florida Policy Institute is also supported by national experts from the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute: Center for Families and Children, and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
To continue collecting and sharing data on what Medicaid recipients are experiencing and ensuring that Floridians do not lose health care coverage, the collective needs to hear from your organizations. By hearing from you, we will continue to serve as a central data hub to track the redetermination process for all types of agencies who serve or interact with Medicaid recipients for any potential systemic issues that arise in 2023.
If you work directly with individuals who receive Medicaid and are having issues with the unwind process, help us collect this information by filling out this Google Form.
If you receive a notice from DCF that says your Medicaid is ending, you should read this Q&A. If you want advice on your appeal, you can contact a legal aid program in your area (this link has program contact information). Or, you can submit this online form and send a copy of your denial notice to the Florida Health justice Project at this email: email@example.com.