The Tennessean reports that federal Medicaid officials have put Tennessee on notice that the state's TennCare application and eligibility process does not comply with federal law. The state has ten days to submit a plan to fix it.

According to the article, the Director of Medicaid Services cited the following deficiencies:

  • Ability to accept a single, streamlined application
  • Ability to convert state income standards to new federal standards
  • Ability to convey Tennessee eligibility rules to the Health Insurance Marketplace, the federal exchange
  • Ability to process applications on new income rules
  • Ability to respond to inquiries from the Health Insurance Marketplace about applicants' current Medicaid coverage
  • Ability to verify eligibility based upon electronic data services

TennCare officials are blaming the problems on outsourced IT contractors.

(By way of

Min's picture


"TennCare officials are blaming the problems on outsourced IT contractors."

I thought private business was so much more efficient at carrying out these kinds of tasks than goverment is.

reform4's picture

Cheaper, yes.

Correctly, no.

mjw's picture

Cheaper at first bid

Then they come back for more funds to "finish" the job.

B Harmon's picture


They knew for years that there would be changes in Medicaid enrollment and yet they were not ready on Jan 1, 2014.

They shut down the in-person enrollment at the local DHS offices and were ONLY taking applications through Yes, they made everyone go to the federal site to enroll in Tenncare. There is an 800 number to call if you have questions, but you cannot meet with a live person to go over all the changes in the income qualifications.

When we were doing ACA enrollments, about half the people that came in were not eligible for the subsidy because their income was too low. They would have been eligible for TennCare if TN had accepted expansion. In most cases, we took them through the enrollment process since they had no other assistance. I hope that eventually the feds will see how many are not being served here in TN since they will have the records.

It is appalling that the state of TN abandoned the most needy citizens in the state. They did nothing to provide any kind of assistance.

I hope that after this first year of the ACA and Medicaid expansion (non-expansion) we will see some real numbers that will completely embarrass our elected officials when compared to Kentucky.

redmondkr's picture

I wouldn't advise holding

I wouldn't advise holding your breath until somebody discovers a way to embarrass a Tennessee Republican.

Knoxoasis's picture

Here you go.

reform4's picture

Or this.

reform4's picture

The important thing to communicate

will be that these costs (ER care) ends up being absorbed in insurance premiums of those with policies. Thus, in the long run, we will pay higher premiums than other states that accepted Medicaid expansion.

That's the data to present, and it should be presented as a HIDDEN TAX, which it is.

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