Issue Brief: Current Issues in NEMT

Executive Summary

The non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) benefit is a critical component of the Medicaid program. This brief reviews the NEMT requirement and details states’ various implementation options. It then probes some of the potential threats to and the future direction of this benefit as: (1) health care delivery increasingly shifts toward capitated managed care; (2) the courts limit the ability to enforce portions of the Medicaid Act; (3) states experiment with eliminating this key benefit for certain adults through Medicaid demonstration waivers; and (4) CMS and states fail to adequately monitor entities that deliver NEMT services. Each of these distinct but related issues threatens enrollees’ ability to access necessary Medicaid services.

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