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NV conservation group supports FERC's transmission planning rule; Memorial Day weekend includes Tornadoes and record-high temperatures; A focus on the Farm Bill for Latino Advocacy Week in D.C; and Southeast Alaska is heating homes with its rainfall.

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U.S. Supreme Court allows South Carolina gerrymander that dilutes Black voters, Sen. Ted Cruz refuses to say if he'll accept 2024 election results, and Trump calls Mar-a-Lago search an attempt to have him assassinated.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

Mississippi seniors may benefit from dual-eligible special-needs coverage

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Tuesday, April 16, 2024   

Certain health plans offer benefits for eligible low-income seniors in Mississippi who have special medical needs, but not everyone knows they are available. Dual-use special-needs plans are Medicare Advantage plans only for those eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid.

Dr. Gina Williams, medical director with UnitedHealthcare, said the push to get more eligible people to sign up coincides with greater awareness of the need for preventive care in a post-pandemic world.

"Everybody's kind of going into a phase where they're not only thinking about acute illness but they're thinking about overall care," she said. "What was the impact of the pandemic from a psychological standpoint? Do you need more support? And then, do you also need more coordination of benefits?"

People who qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid are eligible to enroll in a D-SNP when available in their state. However, to be eligible for a D-SNP, individuals must first enroll in original Medicare Part A and B and must have Medicaid coverage.

In Mississippi in 2021, 24% of eligible individuals were signed up for a D-SNP, below the national average of 29%, according to KFF.

Stacey Carter, Humana director in Mississippi, explained that D-SNPs are responsible for providing the full range of Medicare-covered benefits as well as additional services meeting the needs of its members.

"Now, they can also provide supplemental benefits designed to meet the needs of those dual-eligible beneficiaries, dental, vision, hearing coverage, over-the-counter products, as well as some non-medical transportation," Carter said.

Carter pointed out D-SNPs are person-centered care plans and intervention which are designed to help beneficiaries achieve their goals and to improve their health outcomes.

"We provide access to special services and partners within the community resources in Mississippi to support the unique needs of our most vulnerable members. And resources are offered to address medical, cognitive, socioeconomic, psychological, disease-specific conditions," Carter continued.

Information about dual-eligible special needs plans is online at Medicare.gov.

Disclosure: UnitedHealthcare contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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