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Did you get a blue envelope from MassHealth? Don’t ignore it.

On Behalf of | Jun 8, 2023 | Medicaid/MassHealth Planning |

MassHealth is the Massachusetts Medicaid program. It provides need-based medical coverage for those who need extensive treatment and have limited income and personal resources. Many older adults turn to MassHealth or support when they need in-home nursing care or assistance paying for a bed in a nursing home or long-term rehabilitation facility.

People tend to assume that they will retain their need-based benefits indefinitely after qualifying for MassHealth unless their income suddenly increases. However, a large number of MassHealth beneficiaries may receive a blue envelope in the late spring or early summer of 2023 which could mean they will soon lose benefits. Anyone who receives a blue envelope needs to open it and review the letter’s contents carefully. Failure to do so could increase someone’s chances of losing their benefits.

How many people will lose benefits?

With the expiration of a 2020 Medicaid funding expansion, the state will have to review very carefully to determine whether people still qualify for MassHealth coverage. The state estimates that roughly 400,000 people will no longer receive benefits after the completion of the review process.

There are currently 2.3 million MassHealth recipients, and that number will likely drop to 1.9 million over the next year. The state estimates that these reductions in enrollment will save approximately $1.9 billion for the state budget in the 2024 fiscal year. Roughly half of all current MassHealth beneficiaries will receive automatic renewal, but others will need to take action.

A blue envelope means that the state needs information to continue someone’s benefits. They will need to respond within 14 days in most cases. Some parties who will no longer be eligible for MassHealth benefits will be able to secure other forms of subsidized coverage through the Massachusetts Health Connector.

Careful financial review and planning is typically necessary for those who may need MassHealth and who want to easily qualify should the need arise. Consulting with a lawyer may help individuals properly handle a blue envelope or to plan ahead to qualify for MassHealth benefits down the road.