As Medicaid reenrollment changes, Maryland says 900,000+ people renewed coverage

19 December 2023-The Maryland Department of Health today announced the release of Medicaid renewal data for November 2023. This release marks the halfway point of Medicaid renewals, which is part of an ongoing year-long process set to conclude in April 2024. The recently published data is now available on the Department’s website.

Through November 2023, Maryland Medicaid processed more than 923,000 renewals. Among these renewals:

  • 71% were determined eligible to have their coverage extended. Of this number, 102,471 participants were determined eligible due to active enrollment in the Department of Human Services’ Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  • 11% were disenrolled for procedural reasons, such as not updating eligibility information.
  • 9% were determined to be not eligible based on information provided and were disenrolled.
  • Medicaid enrollment remains above 1.7 million participants.
  • 86,872 were referred to sign up for low-cost coverage through a qualified health plan (QHP) at Maryland Health Connection. 

November marks the Maryland Department of Health resuming procedural terminations, for individuals who have not completed their renewal paperwork, that were paused starting in August to make system updates to improve auto-renewal rates. Improving auto-renewal processes support individuals and reduce administrative burden for individuals and families so they are able to keep their coverage. Through these system enhancements, The Department saw an 18.3% increase in auto-renewal rate when compared to May. 58.9% of individuals were automatically enrolled in November. 

“We are dedicated to using data-driven strategies to help eligible participants successfully renew their coverage,” said Maryland Department of Health Secretary Laura Herrera Scott. “Based on our latest data, we are refining our ‘Medicaid Check-In’ campaign to focus our message towards young adults and in areas facing high procedural disenrollments.” 

From May through September 2023 a demographic analysis showed that certain groups such as children (ages 18 and under), Black/African American individuals, and Baltimore City residents maintained their health care coverage. However, adults aged 21-44 and people in places like the Washington Suburban area and Western Maryland are experiencing higher termination rates.

To address this, the Department is directing more resources and advertising in specific zip codes in Hagerstown, and locations in Prince George’s and Montgomery counties. This involves more presence in local stores, bus shelters, digital platforms, radio ads and billboards in targeted areas. Partner collaborations involve outreach efforts in laundromats and expanding advertisements in existing media saturated areas.  The Department is also expanding outreach through Spanish radio, TV, grassroots efforts, and other mediums to guarantee inclusive coverage for all communities.

“Our primary goal remains ensuring health care access for those who need it,” said Deputy Secretary for Health Care Financing & Medicaid Director Ryan Moran. “Maryland has actively pursued flexibilities to sustain Medicaid coverage for eligible individuals and remains committed to providing accessible health care for its residents by facilitating transitions to other affordable coverage options.”

The Department urges Marylanders who are disenrolled from Medicaid but believe they are still eligible to reach out to the Maryland Health Connection, their local Department of Social Services Office, or Local Health Department. Maryland allows for a 120-day reconsideration period for Medicaid participants. If determined to be eligible on review, a participant’s coverage is reinstated back to the date of coverage loss.

For additional information, please visit Medicaid Check-In 2023 – CMS Waivers and Flexibilities. For individuals who no longer qualify, we urge you to consider the diverse low or no-cost coverage alternatives provided by Maryland Health Connection.