Since the passage of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) on March 18, 2020, most people on Medicaid (Medi-Cal in California) were guaranteed continuous enrollment in Medicaid as long as the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) was still in place. This was because states that were receiving a temporary 6.2 percentage point increase in the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP), in part to help cover increased costs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, were prohibited from terminating anyone’s Medicaid coverage during the PHE, regardless of any increase in income or assets during that time. This legislation has been invaluable in providing secure, continuous coverage for many people during this public health emergency.
As of March 31, 2023, however, this continuous enrollment protection will end. On December 29, 2022, Congress enacted the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023 (CAA, 2023). Among many things, this legislation unlinks the public health emergency with the requirement for continuous Medicaid enrollment. It specifies the end of the continuous enrollment condition, the end of the temporary FMAP increase, and the beginning unwinding process. The unwinding process refers to the up to 12 months states have to initiate, and 14 months to complete, a renewal for all individuals enrolled in Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and the Basic Health Program (BHP) following the end of the continuous enrollment condition.
Beginning April 1, 2023, states will be able to terminate Medicaid enrollment for people no longer eligible.
We will post more information and resources regarding the unwinding process as we receive it.
NOTE: The Department of Healthcare Services (DHCS) highly recommends that if you have Medi-Cal and you moved in the last three years, you should notify your county Medi-Cal office. This will ensure that you receive notifications of your Medi-Cal status and redeterminations.
For more information, see:
- Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) January 5, 2023 Informational Bulletin: Key Dates Related to the Medicaid Continuous Enrollment Condition Provisions in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023
- California’s Department of Health Care Services’ January 10, 2023 letter: Updated Guidance for Counties on Resuming Medi-Cal Redeterminations