Will Tennessee become first state to get Medicaid block grant? 5 things to know

Tennessee formally requested permission from the Trump administration Nov. 20 to fund its Medicaid program through a block grant, according to The Hill.

Five things to know:

1. If approved, Tennessee will become the first state in the nation to fund its Medicaid program through a block grant. The state is the first to ask the government for the change.

2. Tennessee's proposal includes a request for a $7.9 billion block grant from the federal government. The amount is based on the state's anticipated Medicaid costs.

3. Unlike a traditional block grant, Tennessee's proposal would increase with enrollment gains. The state would also share savings with the federal government if it spends less than the grant's total in a given year, according to The Hill.

4. Republicans argue Medicaid block grants will be more fiscally sustainable for states and allow state leaders to have more flexibility with the program. While the Trump administration has encouraged Medicaid block grants, CMS recently withdrew proposed guidance on Medicaid block grants and per capita cap programs from the White House Office of Management and Budget website.

5. Opponents of Medicaid block grants argue the policy could lead to a decrease in Medicaid membership and services. Tennessee hospitals have raised some concerns about the proposal, stating it may hamper physicians' prescribing flexibility. 

To read the full article from The Hill, click here.

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