Gonzalez Joins House Dems Calling for Intervention in Texas Medicaid System

Gonzalez Joins House Dems Calling for Intervention in Texas Medicaid System

Joshua Smith
Joshua Smith
|
September 26, 2023

Texas Representative Vicente Gonzalez (D) recently joined other House Democrats in calling for an intervention in the procedural termination in the Texas Medicaid system.

“Texans are getting kicked off of Medicaid by the thousands because of clerical errors,” said Rep. Gonzalez.

“In a state with the highest rate of uninsured, we can’t afford to leave Texans out to dry. That’s why I’m calling on CMS to immediately intervene.”

In the letter, the House Democrats reminded Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure of the previously written document in which they highlighted the ramifications of Texas’s “violation of Federal Medicaid rules.”

“Vulnerable and marginalized Texans are being denied access to a family physician, essential medications, maternity and postpartum care, mental health treatment, and more—endangering their lives and financial wellbeing. To protect beneficiaries, it is imperative that CMS intervene and require a pause on procedural terminations until Texas’s faulty system undergoes a comprehensive audit and is brought into compliance.”

The letter writers warned against allowing the existing Texas audits to continue given the fact that the cancellations were discovered to have errors.

“Such an audit should be conducted by federal personnel who are granted complete access to Texas’s IT system and test all coverage groups and aspects of the renewal application.”

Many of first 100,000 people’s cases have been restored or have possibly been worked on. However, the letter states that it is unclear the totality of people whose cases were terminated.

“Just last week, the State acknowledged a new error was discovered in the ex part renewal system that resulted in 24,000 children losing coverage instead of being placed into CHIP.”

Not only have nearly one million Texans lost coverage—which is twice the amount of patients in other states—and 74% of those denials were based on procedural reasons. Furthermore, Texas’s 69% disenrollment rate is twice as high as other states.

The letter concludes with a renewed call for the administrator to intervene  in the process and pause the procedural terminations until it is properly audited.

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Joshua Smith

Joshua Smith

Joshua Smith is a writer and recent graduate, majoring in English.

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