Administration Announces State Relief and Empowerment Waivers

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the US Department of Treasury issued new guidance related to Section 1332 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  These State Innovation Waivers gave the Secretaries discretion to approve a state’s proposal to waive specific provisions of the ACA, provided that the state’s plan meets certain requirements.

The waivers will be renamed State Relief and Empowerment Waivers.  The Departments will now consider how well each waiver supports five principles for a high performing health care system: providing increased access to affordable private market coverage; encouraging sustainable spending growth; fostering state innovation; supporting and empowering those in need; and promoting consumer-driven healthcare. According to the Administration, the waivers are intended to give states additional flexibility to provide coverage options.

  • The guidance is available here.
  • The CMS fact sheet is available here.
  • The CMS Blog post is available here.