(Salt Lake City, UT) – The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) today announced that it will suspend the community engagement (self-sufficiency/work) requirement for Medicaid expansion members in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impact. The community engagement policy, newly implemented on January 1, 2020, required some adult members to complete an online job assessment, online training programs, and 48 job searches within the first three months of eligibility in order to continue to receive benefits.
The UDOH estimates that approximately 30 percent of all adult expansion members would have been subject to the community engagement requirement, given that many members would meet one of the 13 exemption criteria, including those who were age 60 or older, pregnant, caring for young children, already working at least 30 hours per week, or students.
“During this time of increasing cases of COVID-19, a “Stay Safe, Stay Home” directive, and rising unemployment, it is important that Medicaid members be able to continue their health coverage,” said Utah Medicaid Director Nate Checketts. “Suspending the community engagement requirement during this State of Emergency recognizes the unique challenges created by this public health crisis.”
Individuals and families who need health coverage may continue to apply for benefits at any time. Information about all Medicaid programs for low-income individuals is available on the Medicaid website at https://medicaid.utah.gov/. Applications are accepted over the phone, by mail or online at https://medicaid.utah.gov/apply-medicaid.
Public Information Officer