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HCWG Meeting Agenda; Coverage of at-home COVID tests; Updated poverty guidelines

Hello all, 
 
A few brief updates: 
 
Health Care Working Group Meeting- Agenda:
 
Our next Health Care Working Group meeting is this Thursday (20th) at 3pm. You should have received a calendar invite with this zoom link for the meeting: 
 
This week's Health Care Working Group meeting will elicit group discussion on recent updates and issues. We'll discuss the following: 
 
1. Federal Public Health Emergency and unwinding the protection from loss of MassHealth coverage
2. 1115 renewal comment deadline (Feb 3)- sign-on letters
3. Fair hearing updates- online appeals, video hearings, fair hearing stats posted online, upcoming meeting with MH
4. Newly arriving immigrants- issues helping new arrivals, and new path to state-funded LTSS
5. Open forum if time permits 
 
MassHealth Coverage of At-Home COVID Tests:
 
In parallel with the federal government's requirement that private health insurance coverage and group health plans cover at-home COVID tests, MassHealth will also now cover the cost of at-home COVID tests. Effective January 14, 2022, all MassHealth, Health Safety Net (HSN), and Children’s Medical Security Plan (CMSP) pharmacy benefits are now covering up to eight at-home antigen self-test kits per member per month without a prescription. See this provider bulletin for more information.
 
In addition, starting January 19, the federal government will ship four free at-home tests to each household who requests them at www.covidtests.gov 
(FYI: for reasons I don't understand, some people may be able to submit their orders now, while others may get a notification that they cannot order until tomorrow, Jan 19).
 
2022 Federal Poverty Level Guidelines Increased
 
The U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services has released the federal poverty guidelines for 2022, here:  https://aspe.hhs.gov/topics/poverty-economic-mobility/poverty-guidelines . 
 
MassHealth will apply these updated amounts on March 1, 2022: stay tuned for the updated FPL chart for MassHealth, which we will post on MassLegalServices.org. Until March 1, refer to the November 2021 table posted here