County Council HHSA Committee Hears Contract Extensions, State Budget Update, Medicaid and More

Tom Pristow, director of the Cuyahoga County Department of Health and Human Services, presented a budget allocation approval request that increased the amount distributed for the Cuyahoga County Tapestry System of Care from $5.7 million to $8.1 million. The Cuyahoga County Tapestry of Care is a partnership with government and non-government agencies to create a system for youth to receive...

JMOC: Behavioral Health Redesign Update

The Joint Medicaid Oversight Committee (JMOC) received testimony from two state directors who provided operational updates and policy changes for the state’s upcoming behavioral health redesign implementation on July 1, 2017. The directors touched on many of the changes the Department of Medicaid and the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services have made since their last presentation before JMOC...

Repeal of ACA Would Deepen Benefit Cliff

For some low-income families, even a small increase in income causes a drop in the public benefits they can receive, effectively increasing their expenses and hurting their ability to make ends meet. This phenomenon is often called the “benefit cliff.” Eligibility for public benefits, such as child care subsidies, housing vouchers, and food assistance, is based on income. These benefits...

Governor’s DODD Budget Includes Investments in Waiver Spending and Rate Increases

Governor Kasich’s recently released executive budget includes several noteworthy adjustments to funding within the state’s developmental disabilities system. Touted as an extension of the state’s “historic” investments of the previous budget cycle, the proposal includes increased funding on several important initiatives.[i] However, the budget includes some notable cuts as well. Overall, the budget proposes a small increase in overall spending;...

State Budget Update: Departments of Health, Mental Health and Addiction Services Testify before HHS Subcommittee

The House Finance Subcommittee on Health and Human Services heard testimony Thursday (March 2, 2017) morning from the directors of the Ohio departments of Health (ODH) and Mental Health and Addiction Services (ODMHAS) as it convened for its fourth hearing of H.B. 49, the executive budget proposal for fiscal years 2018-2019. ODH Testimony ODH Director Richard Hodges testified that the...

JMOC: The Medicaid Group VIII Assessment Findings and Highlights on the Medicaid Portion of the Executive Budget

Director Barbara Sears cemented her first 56 days as Director of the Department of Medicaid by briefing the Joint Medicaid Oversight Committee (JMOC), a committee she once chaired, on the Ohio Medicaid Group VIII Assessment (Expansion) report and Medicaid highlights from the executive budget, House Bill 49. The Medicaid Group VIII Assessment report highlights key findings from an examination on...

Re-entry, Homelessness, and Children Healthcare Tops HHSA Committee’s Agenda

The 2017-2018 Health and Human Services and Aging Committee convened their first meeting on Wednesday, January 18, 2017. The committee is now chaired by District 7 County Councilwoman Yvonne Conwell. Vice Chair of the committee is newly elected County Councilman Scott Tuma.  Councilwoman Shontel Brown and Councilman Dale Miller remain on the committee, where they are joined by newly appointed...

Census Bureau Prepares for 2020 Census and Continues Annual American Community Survey

On April 1, 2020, a little over three years from now, the U.S. Census Bureau will conduct its decennial Census, counting every person and housing unit in the country. The Census is mandated by the U.S. Constitution with its primary purpose to provide data for apportioning seats in the House of Representatives among the states. Planning activities for 2020 have...

Governor’s Last Budget Introduced, Heads to Ohio House

Governor Kasich introduced his last two-year budget proposal this week. The governor’s proposals run the gamut from revivals of previous tax proposals to advancing strategies to increase value and quality in health and human services. Many of the details of the budget proposal are still unknown. Further analysis of these proposals is forthcoming, as we learn more about the budget...

The Return on Investment of Medicaid Expansion: Supporting Work and Health in Rural Ohio

When debating the Medicaid expansion in 2013, the Ohio legislature appropriately questioned whether expanding the program to non-disabled adults would be done so efficiently, supporting the health, welfare, and economy of Ohio and its citizens. The subsequent policy process reflected this focus on program performance, including a legislative committee tour around Ohio to understand the potential impact of expansion, the...