HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

1227

TWENTY-NINTH LEGISLATURE, 2017

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

relating to medicaid providers.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that because of Hawaii's high cost of living and food prices, many low-income individuals and families struggle to purchase food. The supplemental nutrition assistance program, formerly known as the food stamp program, is a crucial means of providing necessary assistance in the purchasing of food for some of Hawaii's most disadvantaged citizens. In September 2016, 173,669 people in Hawaii participated in the supplemental nutrition assistance program, which is 5.1 per cent less participation than in September 2015. While Hawaii secures over $500,000,000 annually in supplemental nutrition assistance program moneys, a 2012 report by the United States Department of Agriculture ranked Hawaii above only Nevada, California, and Wyoming in the percentage of eligible individuals that participate in the supplemental nutrition assistance program.

The legislature also finds that individuals that receive assistance through the state medicaid program are likely eligible to participate in the supplemental nutrition assistance program as eligibility for both programs is based on income. In September 2016, 343,101 people in Hawaii were enrolled in Medicaid. If 173,669 people in Hawaii participated in the supplemental nutrition assistance program in September 2016, that leaves 169,432 people enrolled in medicaid who were likely eligible to, but did not, participate in the supplemental nutrition assistance program. If additional eligible individuals participated in the supplemental nutrition assistance program, the State could receive an estimated $247,000,000 more in federal funding, which is ultimately injected into the economy without negatively impacting the state budget. Moody's Analytics estimates that for every dollar given in supplemental nutrition assistance program funds, one dollar and seventy cents can be generated in the local economy.

The legislature further finds that many individuals that are eligible to participate in the supplemental nutrition assistance program do not participate because they are unaware of their eligibility or of the supplemental nutrition assistance program's existence. Authorizing health care providers to question those applying to receive or currently receiving medicaid about their participation in the supplemental nutrition assistance program may help health care providers reach out to and educate clients about the benefits available through participation in the supplemental nutrition assistance program. Furthermore, authorizing health care providers to report to the legislature an aggregate collection of data about state supplemental nutrition assistance program participation creates a mechanism in which policy makers can better establish plans to maximize federal funding and fight hunger. Each of these outcomes will result in the State having more supplemental nutrition assistance program participants, which in turn will result in heightened food security for low-income individuals and families, and more money flowing into the State's economy.

The purpose of this Act is to authorize health care providers to ask clients, and subsequently report aggregate responses to the legislature, about participation in the supplemental nutrition assistance program.

SECTION 2. Chapter 346, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to part II to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"346- Supplemental nutrition assistance program participation. (a) Each provider of health care under the state medicaid program may place on medicaid certification and re-certification forms the following question: "Are you currently participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)?"

(b) Each provider of health care under the state medicaid program may collect and release to the department and the legislature aggregate supplemental nutrition assistance program participation information; provided that the release of information shall not include the name of any individual and shall be subject to applicable privacy standards established under federal medicaid regulations and the administrative simplification provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, P.L. 104-191."

SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect upon its approval

 

INTRODUCED BY:

_____________________________

 

 

 

 


 


 

Report Title:

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program; Medicaid

 

Description:

Authorizes health care providers under the state medicaid program to ask about supplemental nutrition assistance program (food stamp) participation on medicaid certification and re-certification forms.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.