Medicaid funding for non-emergency transportation might be safer than
first thought, thanks to
LeadingAge and dozens of other lobbying advocacy groups.

Their voices were apparently heard by congressional leaders.

At press time, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services was expected to issue a rule that would make it optional for states to cover such non-emergency transportation services. It’s part of a larger bid to slash $143 billion from Medicaid. 

However, the Congressional Black Caucus, and other legislators from both parties, were pushing a spending restriction that would prevent the rule from moving forward.

Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) noted that about 1 in 10 Medicaid beneficiaries use the benefit, but it accounts for just 1% of the program’s spending.

“This is what allows so many — 10% of Medicaid patients — to be able to continue living,” said Bishop, a member of the House Appropriations Committee, which supports the spending restriction.  

Such transportation services — often used for dialysis, doctor visits or physical therapy — have been mandatory since Medicaid’s inception. CMS, however, has granted states such as Indiana and Iowa waivers to cut back on the offering.