States pursuing Medicaid system upgrades, study finds

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According to Kaiser, 45 states now interface electronically with the Social Security Administration (SSA) to verify applicants' citizenship; 37 offer an online application for Medicaid or CHIP; and 28 allow beneficiaries to renew enrollment online.

Kaiser called states' electronic data match with the SSA a "major procedural and cultural change" that will act as a precursor to the Affordable Care Act's federal data hub.

The new Medicaid system requirements are designed to ensure that state systems can interface with the new health insurance exchanges, regardless of whether they are state-based or federally facilitated. The requirements will also ease state decisions to expand Medicaid eligibility later on, Kaiser said.

"Our survey shows that states already are making significant advances to modernize the Medicaid enrollment process in 2014 to lower barriers to coverage and reduce administrative burdens for both families and states," said Diane Rowland, executive director of the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, in a statement.