From addressing poor payment and administrative barriers to equity issues, pediatricians have long called for essential reform of Medicaid. The top resolution from a recent AAP Leadership Conference called for foundational change.
The AAP Committee on Child Health Financing (COCHF) is working to address those concerns and has updated a range of policies (https://bit.ly/3VCJPZq).
“The top priority so far is to really come up with the most rational and reasonable approach to reforming Medicaid,” said COCHF Chair James M. Perrin, M.D., FAAP. “We know from our families, we know from our pediatricians that Medicaid is an incredibly important program that provides an immense amount of coverage to so many children and families. But it is not working right.”
Dr. Perrin is part of a new Medicaid Expert Advisory Panel, which is working to transform Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The subject matter experts will help inform AAP initiatives on child health financing, value-based care, mental-behavioral health and health outcomes measurement.
“The purpose of our putting together this panel is to a have a small group of very expert people advising us on what really are the most realistic things for us to do both in the short term but also in the longer term,” Dr. Perrin said.
“Medicaid pays substantially less than Medicare or commercial payers, and that discriminates against people who are covered by Medicaid…. It’s one of the things we really want to change,” he added.
The Medicaid Expert Advisory Panel will hold a summit in the spring. Among the topics to be discussed are whether Medicaid should become the federal government’s responsibility or be merged with CHIP.