Medicaid Enrollment & Spending Growth: FY 2019 & 2020

Definition of Medicaid Spending. Total Medicaid spending includes all payments to Medicaid providers for Medicaid-covered services provided to enrolled Medicaid beneficiaries. Medicaid spending also includes special disproportionate share hospital (DSH) payments that subsidize uncompensated hospital care for persons who are uninsured and unreimbursed costs of care for persons on Medicaid. Not included in total Medicaid spending are Medicaid administrative costs and federally mandated state “Clawback” payments to Medicare (to help finance the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit for Medicaid beneficiaries who are also enrolled in Medicare). States are also asked to exclude costs for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Total Medicaid spending includes payments financed from all sources, including state funds, local contributions, and federal matching funds. Historical state Medicaid spending refers to all non-federal spending, which may include local funds and provider taxes and fees as well as state general fund dollars.

Methodology. The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) commissioned Health Management Associates (HMA) to survey Medicaid directors in all 50 states and DC to identify and track trends in Medicaid spending, enrollment, and policymaking. Given differences in the financing structure of their programs, the U.S. territories were not included in this analysis. This is the 19th annual survey, conducted at the beginning of each state fiscal year from FY 2002 through FY 2020. The KFF/HMA Medicaid survey for this report was sent to each Medicaid director in June 2019. Medicaid directors and staff responded to the written survey and participated in follow-up telephone interviews from June through September 2019. All 50 states and DC participated in this year’s survey (although Maryland was not available to complete a follow-up interview).

For FY 2019 and FY 2020, annual rates of growth for Medicaid spending were calculated as weighted averages across all states. Weights for spending were derived from the most recent state Medicaid expenditure data for FY 2018, based on estimates prepared for KFF by the Urban Institute using CMS Form 64 reports, adjusted for state fiscal years. These CMS-64 data were also used for historic Medicaid spending. For FY 2018, state spending for New York was adjusted to reflect growth reported on the 2019 state survey due to unexplained anomalies in the CMS-64 data.

Medicaid average annual growth rates for enrollment were calculated using weights based on Medicaid and CHIP monthly enrollment data for June 2019 published by CMS. Historical enrollment trend data for FY 1998 to FY 2013 reflects the annual percentage change from June to June of monthly enrollment data for Medicaid beneficiaries collected from states. Enrollment trend data for FY 2014 to FY 2019 reflects growth in average monthly enrollment based on KFF analysis of the Medicaid & CHIP Monthly Applications, Eligibility Determinations, and Enrollment Reports from CMS. The data reported for FY 2019 and FY 2020 for Medicaid spending and FY 2020 for Medicaid enrollment are weighted averages, and therefore, data reported for states with larger enrollment and spending have a greater effect on the national average. Additional information collected in the survey on policy actions taken during FY 2019 and FY 2020 can be found in the companion report.

Issue Brief Appendix

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