New federal poverty guidelines for Alaska are effective March 1, 2009. These increase the income standards used to determine eligibility for the following Medicaid categories:
• Denali KidCare for children and pregnant women;
• Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries (QMB);
• Special Low-Income Medicare Beneficiaries (SLMB and SLMB Plus);
• Transitional Medicaid;
• Qualified Disabled and Working Individuals (QDWI);
• Working Disabled Medicaid Buy-in; and
• Low-Income Subsidies.
The new federal poverty guidelines also cause an increase in the self-employment income annualization standards, which are used by the Temporary Assistance, Food Stamp and Medicaid programs. Eligibility staff must use the new standards when making eligibility determinations beginning with the benefit month of March 2009. EIS tables have been updated to reflect the change.
Senior Benefits payments are also based on federal poverty guidelines, and we expect about 230 recipients will receive a higher payment as a result of the new guidelines. The Senior Benefits Office will adjust these cases in February for March benefits. About 50 of these recipients are included in a Food Stamp case. The Senior Benefits worker will set an alert “UPDATE CASE SR BENEFITS CHANGE” on these Food Stamp cases. Food Stamp workers must update these cases and send a notice of adverse action notice for any decrease in the Food Stamp benefit.
The relevant income standard changes will be included in the next program manual updates. In the interim, please use the attached 2009 Medicaid Standards chart, which includes the self-employment income annualization standards for each program. This chart is also available on the DPA website at: http://dpaweb.hss.state.ak.us/POLICY/PDF/medstandards2009.pdf
If you have any questions about the new income standards please contact DPA Policy and Program Development at 465-3347 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.