The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services this week approved a waiver allowing Utah to expand Medicaid services to up to 6,000 low-income adults without children. Adults with incomes up to 5% percent of the federal poverty line who are chronically homeless or suffer from substance use issues would gain coverage, and the state will begin enrolling individuals newly eligible for Medicaid immediately. CMS also approved a Section 1115 waiver for Utah for a demonstration project to provide residential substance abuse treatment services to Medicaid recipients. The approval was part of a new CMS policy that allows states to design demonstration projects that increase access to treatment for opioid use disorders and other SUDs. “Utah’s hospitals have worked with Rep. Dunnigan and Gov. Herbert’s administration on this waiver request from the beginning,” said Greg Bell, president and CEO of the Utah Hospital Association. “The waiver is one step in finding uniquely Utah solutions to increase health care coverage in our state. We look forward to working with our members, our public health partners and the Utah state legislature to continue to innovate and identify coverage solutions that work for our communities.”

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