National Health Law Program

Founded in 1969, the National Health Law Program (NHeLP) protects and advances the health rights of low-income and underserved individuals and families. The oldest nonprofit of its kind, NHeLP advocates, educates and litigates at the federal and state levels. NHeLP’s lawyers and policy analysts stand up for the rights of the millions of people who struggle to access affordable, quality health care.

Kids & Families

Clear topic
  • NHeLP Comments on House Passage of CHIP Reauthorization

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) issued a press release after the House of Representatives passed HR 2, which would reauthorize CHIP for two years. The release lauds the passage of the bill but cites concerns that the bill includes the Hyde Amendment that would severely limit federal funding for abortions. Elizabeth G. Taylor, executive director for NHeLP, stated, “[w]e hope that this bipartisan two-year extension is the start of a longer conversation about protecting CHIP and moving forward to fully fund the program for four more years.”

  • NHeLP Pens Guide to Medicaid Managed Care

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published a guide on oversight, transparency, and accountability in Medicaid Managed Care, highlighting tools, tips, and ways to get information about states’ managed care programs. The guide provides a comprehensive primer on the program including: background on the history and structure of Medicaid managed care; contracting; plan design and performance; enrollment; waivers; and grievances and appeals.

  • NHeLP Releases Statement on Republican CHIP Proposal

    Share |
    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) issued a press release on the discussion draft bill released by Representative Upton, Representative Pitts, and Senator Hatch. The press release notes that the Republican proposal would eliminate the maintenance of effort (MOE) provisions, allow states to shift children from Medicaid to CHIP, allow states to impose waiting periods before coverage can begin, and eliminate federal funding to cover children with family incomes above 300 percent of the federal poverty line. Elizabeth G. Taylor, executive director for NHeLP, stated, “While we welcome continued bipartisan commitment to protect and extend CHIP, we are troubled by some major provisions in the draft plan.”
  • KidsWell Partners Issue Alert About Healthcare.gov Incorrectly Calculating Household Income

    Share |

    CCF, NHeLP: The Georgetown Center for Children and Families, the National Health Law Program, and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, issued an alert that Healthcare.gov has been incorrectly counting social security income for tax dependents. The brief notes that under federal rules, the social security income of children and other tax dependents only counts if the dependent is required to file a tax return, but that Healthcare.gov has been counting it even if the dependent is not required to file taxes.  

  • NHeLP Publishes Medicaid Fact Sheet

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published a fact sheet on the top 5 reasons Medicaid is essential to low-income people. The fact sheet explains that Medicaid is essential for low-income individuals because: it is designed specifically for this population; it has  provider network rules guaranteeing access; it is truly affordable; it protects individuals’ rights; and because it provides people with access and continuity.

  • NHeLP Publishes Newsletter on California’s EPSDT Guidance

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an issue of Lessons from California on advocating for Medi-Cal managed care plans to provide a wide array of services to children.  The newsletter explains that federal Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment (EPSDT) requirements to mandate that states provide services to children without delay or denial based on the possibility that other entities could provide said services.

  • NHeLP Publishes Q& A on Relatives as Paid Providers

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published a Q&A about a federal program that allows states to pay adults who are legally responsible for children or other relatives for providing Medicaid-funded home and community-based services. The Q&A also discusses different options available to states and existing case law.

  • NHeLP Publishes Issue Brief About Vision Services for Children on Medicaid

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an issue brief on vision services available to children with Medicaid coverage through the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit. The brief discusses: the severity and prevalence of common eye conditions among children; the developmental consequences of untreated vision loss; standards and recommendations for screenings; performance and monitoring of vision services rendered under the EPSDT benefit; and recommendations for CMS and state Medicaid agencies to improve children’s vision services.

  • NHeLP Publishes Fact Sheet and Lessons Learned on CMS Guidance on Treatments for Children with ASD

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) published a fact sheet on CMS’s guidance related to treatments for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The fact sheet explains that states are now obligated to cover services for children under 21 when medically necessary, even if they are not covered for adults. NHeLP also published an issue brief, Lessons from California, highlighting how California is working to provide Behavioral Health Treatment to children with ASD who are enrolled in Medi-Cal.

  • NHeLP Publishes Issue Brief About Hearing Services for Children on Medicaid

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an issue brief  focused on hearing services available to children on Medicaid through the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit. The brief outlines: the scope of hearing loss in children; standards and guidelines; the EPSDT benefit; states strategies for implementing EPSDT requirements related to hearing screenings; and recommendations to ensure that children with hearing loss are identified early and receive proper services.

  • NHeLP Publishes E-Newsletter Advocating for Age-Appropriate Sex Education

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an e-newsletter exploring how medical screenings through the Early and Period Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit could and should include sexuality education from infancy through age 20. The e-newsletter recognizes EPSDT as an opportunity for children to receive sexuality education along with comprehensive health screenings.

  • KidsWell Partners Featured in New York Times and Circulate CHIP Sign-on Letter

    Share |

    CDF, First Focus, NHeLP: KidsWell partners First Focus and Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) signed onto a letter to the editor featured in The New York Times supporting the extension of CHIP funding. In addition, First Focus, CDF, and the National Health Law Program, along with 10 other national organizations, are circulating a sign-on letter encouraging leadership in Congress to extend CHIP funding. Organizations are encouraged to add their names to the letter by October 13th.

  • NHeLP Files Suit Against California Over Medicaid Application Delays

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program, along with five other legal services organizations and community healthcare advocates, filed a lawsuit in Superior Court accusing California of taking significantly longer than the 45-day time limit required by law to process Medi-Cal applications. The lawsuit asks the court to require the State to: determine Medi-Cal eligibility within 45 days of submission; notify applicants affected by the backlog that they can request a hearing; and provide benefits to eligible applicants while their applications are being processed.

  • NHeLP Supports Federal Court Ruling on Tennessee Medicaid Lawsuit

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) issued a press release supporting a federal judge’s decision ordering Tennessee to provide hearings to residents whose Medicaid applications have been unreasonably delayed and certifying the litigation as a class action lawsuit. The lawsuit, originally filed by NHeLP, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and the Tennessee Justice Center, alleges that Tennessee makes it unnecessarily difficult to apply for Medicaid Coverage. Elizabeth Edwards, staff attorney at NHeLP, stated, “We are pleased that Judge Campbell recognized this as a statewide problem. The law requires Medicaid applications to be processed promptly because low-income individuals and people with disabilities often have a brutal need for health care that, without TennCare coverage, they will be unable to afford.”

  • NHeLP Issues Recommendations for Modernization of Medicaid Regulations

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published recommended language to update  Medicaid managed care regulations (42 C.F.R. Part 438) which have not been updated since 2002. The recommended language encompasses today’s managed care population that includes people who have disabilities, who are older, and/or who have limited English proficiency. 

  • NHeLP Publishes E-Newsletter on Alternative Benefit Plans

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published an e-newsletter on Alternative Benefit Plans (ABPs) that must be offered to the newly eligible Medicaid expansion population. The e-newsletter, which compliments a fact sheet published last month, discusses how states decide what benefits to include in their ABPs, noting that 19 of 27 states that are expanding Medicaid have aligned ABP benefits with Medicaid state plan benefits. 

  • NHeLP Celebrates the 49th Anniversary of Medicaid and Medicare

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) issued a statement in honor of Medicaid and Medicare’s 49th Anniversary. The statement applauds the programs for providing health coverage to low-income children, adults, and persons with disabilities, but notes that nearly six million people remain uninsured in states that have declined to expand Medicaid. E Jane Perkins, legal director for NHeLP stated, “…[T]ogether with Medicare, Medicaid ensures that older adults and individuals with disabilities can live full and healthy lives in their communities. They are the backbone of our safety-net and are as critical now as they were in 1965.”

  • NHeLP Hosts Webinar on Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Decision

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program and the American Public Health Association co-hosted a webinar on the Supreme Court Decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby that allows closely held companies with religious objections to refuse to cover contraception for its employees. The webinar reviews the ACA contraceptive coverage provisions, the case’s journey to the Supreme Court, the impact of the Court’s decision, and state contraceptive equity laws.

  • NHeLP Publishes Fact Sheet on Alternative Benefit Plans for the Medicaid Expansion Population

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program published a fact sheet on Alternative Benefit Plans (ABPs) that must be offered to the newly eligible Medicaid expansion population. The fact sheet discusses alignment of ABP benefits to other coverage vehicles, highlights trends in approved ABP State Plan Amendments, and provides technical assistance for advocates when evaluating their states’ ABP.  

  • NHeLP Issues Statement on Lawsuit Filed Against State of Tennessee

    Share |

    NHeLP: The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) released a statement on the federal class action lawsuit filed against the state of Tennessee by NHeLP, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and the Tennessee Justice Center. The lawsuit, which was filed after CMS sent state officials a letter indicating the state failed to meet six of seven critical Medicaid success factors required by the ACA, alleges that Tennessee makes it harder than any other state to apply for Medicaid coverage. Jane Perkins, legal director for NHeLP stated, “Each day that Tennessee fails to follow the law, the health and lives of more Tennesseans are put at risk. We are monitoring [Medicaid] enrollment in other states, and at this point, Tennessee is among the worst, if not the worst, offenders. The state is doing the least to help its residents obtain health insurance coverage they are qualified for and need.”

View News by Partner