by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Labor organizations will no longer be allowed to skim dues money from the checks of Medicaid patients under new rules adopted by the Trump administration.
The Department of Health and Human Services’s Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services adopted a new regulation that will prohibit states from siphoning money from caregiver reimbursements to third parties. The rule takes direct aim at state policies enacted to enrich union coffers.
“State Medicaid programs are responsible for ensuring that taxpayer dollars are dedicated to providing healthcare services for low-income, vulnerable Americans and are not diverted in ways that do not comply with federal law,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma said in a release. “This final rule is intended to ensure that providers receive their complete payment.”
Several states have used forced dues schemes in the past to automatically deduct union fees from the reimbursement checks intended to pay for the care of disabled citizens. In many cases that money has gone to family members who serve as full-time caregivers to their severely disabled relatives. The new rule will prevent states from enforcing those policies in the future.