Medicaid 101: Work Requirements

Medicaid 101: Work Requirements

Dec 17 2019

Medicaid work requirements have been a hot topic in the news lately. But what are they and what do they mean for us in Michigan?

Medicaid work requirements are coming Jan. 1, 2020. Let’s break down what they are, how they work and how they may affect your health coverage.

What are Medicaid work requirements?
Work requirements are rules related to the amount of work or other qualifying activities that Medicaid members must complete to keep their coverage. If the members don’t follow them, they are at risk to lose coverage.

It’s important to stay informed about work requirements so you don’t lose your coverage. When work requirements went online in Arkansas, 17,000 people lost their health coverage because they didn’t know about the changes. To stay informed about work requirements in Michigan, check out Priority Health’s Staying Covered: Healthy Michigan page.

How does the system work?
Michigan has a Medicaid expansion plan called the Healthy Michigan Plan, providing health care coverage to nearly 700,000 people statewide. Beginning Jan.1, 2020, members of the Healthy Michigan Plan will have to complete and report 80 hours of work or other qualifying activities per month.

Working 80 hours a month isn’t the only way to meet the new requirements. There are other activities that count toward the 80-hour requirement, like going to school full time, searching for a job, job training and more. Visit the Staying Covered: Healthy Michigan Plan page to read about other qualifying activities.

Does every Healthy Michigan Plan member have to follow these new rules?
No, not every member must meet the requirements. Healthy Michigan members can be exempt from the requirements for a variety of situations and conditions. Certain circumstances, such as pregnancy or receiving state-provided unemployment benefits, could excuse you from the Healthy Michigan Plan rules. Be sure to check the program’s page to see if any of the circumstances apply to you.

Do these rules apply to me?
If you’re a Healthy Michigan Plan member, and you’re not exempt (excused) from work requirements, you should’ve received a letter in the mail that looks like this. Priority Health has contacted impacted members via email and letters in the mail.

How do I make sure I keep my coverage?
The easiest way to keep your coverage is by getting an exemption for one of the reasons listed above. If you qualify for one, you can file for it through either a paper form, by phone or in person.

If you’re not exempt, you need to follow the work requirements to stay covered. There are resources available through Michigan Works! to find a job if you don’t already have one. When it comes to work requirements, make sure that you’re both staying informed and following the rules. It can be the difference between keeping and losing your health coverage. To stay informed about work requirements in Michigan, mark the Priority Health Staying Covered: Healthy Michigan page a favorite for the latest updates.

N4001-11 Approved MH12102019