Public hearing for a new expansion of Medicaid coverage

WILLISTON, N.D. - The North Dakota Behavioral Health and Human Services had their last public hearing for a new expansion of Medicaid coverage across the state.

When in effect, 1915i will give children and adults more coverage for things like drug recovery, employment, housing, transportation, and crisis management. With the plan, Williston’s Community Options could qualify for Medicaid funding to get more staff, and provide better services, like helping convicted felons get jobs and housing.

Right now, the only staff member in Williston says she doesn’t have the resources to help the more than 100 felon referrals she’s received.

“It would be life changing for so many people. I think at the end of the day, my job is to make other people’s lives easier. To help them be self sufficient, and if I can do that in one more person’s life because of this, that’s going to be a win," said Madison Davis, Community Options employment specialist.

Community Options also works with people in other types of situations; from those with brain injuries to the elderly, and it hopes 1915i would expand services for those areas as well.

Now that public comment is over, the state will write up the plan and send it off to the federal Medicaid agency. They hope coverage begins next July.