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As Deadline Looms, Some Struggle to Submit Work Hours Online for New Medicaid Requirement

With just days remaining before the first deadline to comply with the state's new Medicaid work requirement, some people say they are having problems submitting their work hours through the state website.

On that website, a drop-down menu lists the categories under which Medicaid beneficiaries can submit their hours. The list includes volunteering, job training, and a half-dozen other activities.

It does not include employment or self-employment. In fact, it appears there is no way for a Medicaid beneficiary to submit their own work hours online.

That's not a problem for many people on Medicaid, whose employers are already providing data to the state that proves they're meeting the requirement. It does present a challenge for self-employed independent contractors looking to report their own work hours.

That's the case for the Medicaid beneficiary whose account is shown here. These screenshots were provided to NHPR through attorneys at New Hampshire Legal Assistance. They say their client is trying to report the 104 hours they worked in June. So far, neither the beneficiary nor the lawyers at NHLA have been able to figure out how to do that using the state website.

The inability to self report hours online may be at odds with the rules the federal government laid out when it allowed New Hampshire to implement the work requirement. Those rules say that beneficiaries must be allowed to self-attest their work hours.

A state health department spokesperson said they could not make anyone available for comment Wednesday.

Medicaid beneficiaries with questions about their work requirement can call a state help line at 1-844-275-3447 or ask for help in person at a DHHS office.

The new rule requires people between the ages of 19-64 to work at least 100 hours each month in order to receive health benefits through expanded Medicaid. It applies to roughly 28,000 people in the state.

The deadline to report hours from June is this Sunday.

Jason Moon is a senior reporter and producer on the Document team. He has created longform narrative podcast series on topics ranging from unsolved murders, to presidential elections, to secret lists of police officers.
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