Federal measures implemented at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic are expected to end in May. That means many people won’t be eligible for health care benefits they received during the pandemic.

Although COVID-19 continues to affect people three years after the World Health Organization declared a pandemic, the public health emergency is set to expire May 11. Here are some ways health care coverage will be affected:

Medicaid eligibility

Beginning April 1, states will begin to disenroll people no longer eligible for Medicaid coverage. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act enacted in 2020 required Medicaid to continue covering people whose eligibility may have changed during the pandemic. The law required state Medicaid programs to continuously enroll them throughout the emergency period.

States have up to 14 months to redetermine eligibility and disenroll those no longer eligible. Some states will take the full 14 months, while others plan to complete the process much more quickly. Learn more at Medicaid.gov.

If you receive Medicaid benefits, take these steps to renew your coverage.

Marketplace special enrollment period

People who lose Medicaid or Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage might be able to enroll for health care benefits through health insurance marketplaces. The federal health insurance marketplace will offer special enrollment period for people lose their Medicaid or CHIP coverage from March 31, 2023, to July 31, 2024. State health insurance marketplaces also might offer special enrollment periods for those who lose Medicaid or CHIP benefits, but they’re not required to.

Renewal guidelines are available on the Medicaid website.

COVID care

Beginning May 11, Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans no longer will have to provide free, home-based COVID-19 testing and treatment. Many private insurance plans will stop providing free COVID test at the same time.

Medicare has extended telehealth benefits through Dec. 31, 2024.

Questions? Contact PHA’s treatment access program at 301-565-3004 x758 or email us.