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Section 1115 Medicaid demonstration waivers provide states an avenue to test new approaches in Medicaid that differ from federal program rules. Waivers can provide states considerable flexibility in how they operate their programs, beyond what is available under current law, and can have a significant impact on program financing. As such, waivers have important implications for beneficiaries, providers, and states. While there is great diversity in how states have used waivers over time, waivers generally reflect priorities identified by states and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Looking ahead, states are likely to continue to request waivers to implement provisions not allowed under current law; however, it is not yet clear what role Section 1115 waivers will play as the new administration and Congress move to repeal the ACA and debate possible broader changes to Medicaid financing. This page highlights key resources examining Section 1115 waivers and, farther down, also provides the standard search result page for a site-wide search on the “waivers” tag.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Section 1115 Medicaid and SCHIP Waivers: Policy Implications of Recent Activities

This policy brief provides an overview of recent Section 1115 waivers and a discussion of key issues. The HIFA initiative, combined with state fiscal pressures, have led to an increase in the number of states seeking Section 1115 waivers. Many of these recent waivers stake out new ground in terms of the scope of changes in coverage that they permit.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Pharmacy Plus Waivers: Trade Offs Between Expanding Rx Coverage and Global Caps in Medicaid

The Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured has been monitoring the development of the Pharmacy Plus waiver initiated by the Bush Administration in 2002 and tracking the states that have pending or approved plans. The Commission has developed some materials describing the initiative, examining the financing mechanism, and discussing…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Utah Section 1115 Waiver – UPDATE

Utah Section 1115 Waiver Fact Sheet (.pdf)

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Oregon Section 1115 Waiver – UPDATE

Oregon Section 1115 Waiver

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Medicaid as a Long-Term Care Program: Current Benefits and Flexibility

This brief focuses on one subset of “flexibility” issues: the current federal benefits and cost-sharing rules that apply with respect to long-term care.Issue Paper (.pdf)

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

An Overview of the Independence Plus Initiative to Promote Consumer-Direction of Services in Medicaid

This issue brief provides an overview of the Independence Plus Initiative, compares core program features with the Cash and Counseling Demonstration program, and discusses several policy issues that arise in the implementation of this initiative.Issue Paper (.pdf)

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Restructuring Medicaid: Key Elements and Issues in Section 1115 Demonstration Waivers

This policy brief provides background on Section 1115 Medicaid waiver activity, discusses the common provisions of the approved and proposed Section 1115 waivers since 1993, and briefly summarizes the current application of Section 1115 AFDC waivers. It also examines implications of the Section 1115 waivers on the Medicaid program and…

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Issues Facing Medicaid and CHIP

Cindy Mann, senior fellow of the Commission, testified to the Senate Subcommittee on Public Health of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on how to sustain and expand health care coverage for low-income children and families, and disabled and elderly people in these challenging times.

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

Maine Section 1115 Waiver

Fact Sheet (.pdf)

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation

New Mexico Section 1115 Waiver

Fact Sheet (.pdf)

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.