Medicaid enrollees allowed hospice and curative care

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Sept. 20, 2010

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The federal health reform law allows people younger than 21 receiving hospice care in Medicaid to also receive curative treatments, according to a Sept. 9 letter by Cindy Mann, director of Center for Medicaid, CHIP and Survey & Certification. The benefit applies to state Children's Health Insurance Programs set up as Medicaid expansions. If states elect to provide hospice care to Medicaid and CHIP enrollees who are 21 and older, they also must provide curative care.

Children qualify for hospice if a physician certifies that the patient is in the last six months of life, Mann said. The curative benefits include pain and symptom management and family counseling.

"This provision will increase utilization of hospice services, since parents and children will no longer be required to forgo curative treatment," Mann wrote.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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