Annual Update of the HHS Poverty Guidelines, 1167-1168 [2019-00621]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 22 / Friday, February 1, 2019 / Notices DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics: Meeting Pursuant to the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announces the following advisory committee meeting. Name: National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics (NCVHS), Subcommittee on Privacy, Confidentiality and Security. Date and Times: Thursday, March 21, 2019: 9:00 a.m.–5:30 p.m. (EDT), Friday, March 22, 2019: 8:30 a.m.–3:00 p.m. (EDT). Place: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, 3311 Toledo Road, Auditorium, Hyattsville, Maryland 20782. Status: Open. There will be an opportunity for public comment at the end of the first day of the meeting. Purpose: NCVHS is charged with studying and identifying privacy and security and access measures to protect individually identifiable health information in an environment of electronic networking and multiple uses of data. Further, the Committee advises the Secretary and is mandated to report to Congress on the status of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), which establishes the regulatory framework for personally identifiable health information by covered entities and business associates. Through the Subcommittee on Privacy, Confidentiality and Security, the Committee undertook a ‘‘Beyond HIPAA’’ initiative to examine emerging health information privacy and security issues that are beyond the scope of HIPAA to consider a health data privacy and security framework for the 21st century. The goals for the Beyond HIPAA initiative are to: 1. Identify and describe the changing environment and the risks to privacy and security of confidential health information; highlight promising policies, practices and technology; 2. Lay out integrative models for how best to protect individuals’ privacy and secure health data uses outside of HIPAA protections while enabling useful uses, services and research; 3. Formulate recommendations for the Secretary on actions that HHS and other federal Departments might take; and 4. Prepare a report for data stewardship. The objective of this meeting is to develop recommendations to define a VerDate Sep<11>2014 21:23 Jan 31, 2019 Jkt 247001 contemporary framework of data stewardship for the HHS Secretary, including a pathway for improving private and public sector governance of health information over the next decade. To accomplish this, the Subcommittee plans to: (a) Outline key principles for stewardship of health data in the environment described in a recent NCVHS environmental scan report and the essential public and private levers to ensure appropriate governance; (b) Reach consensus on actions to update NCVHS’ 2008 report, ‘‘Enhanced Protections for Uses of Health Data: A Stewardship Framework for ‘‘Secondary Uses’’ of Electronically Collected and Transmitted Health Data—Summary for Policy Makers.’’ Through this work, the Subcommittee also plans to identify key themes for communications with individuals, policymakers, and stakeholders in the private sector. The times and topics for this meeting are subject to change. Please refer to the posted agenda for any updates. Contact Persons for More Information: Substantive program information may be obtained from Rebecca Hines, MHS, Executive Secretary, NCVHS, National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 3311 Toledo Road, Hyattsville, Maryland 20782, telephone (301) 458–4715. Information pertaining to meeting content may be obtained from Rachel Seeger, MA, MPA, Office of the Secretary/Office of Civil Rights, Room 509E, Department of Health and Human Services, 200 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20201, telephone: (202) 260–7106. Summaries of meetings and a roster of Committee members are available on the NCVHS website: www.ncvhs.hhs.gov, where further information including a meeting agenda and instructions to access the live broadcast of the meeting will be posted. Should you require reasonable accommodation, please contact the CDC Office of Equal Employment Opportunity on (770) 488–3210 as soon as possible. Dated: January 28, 2019. Sharon Arnold, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Science and Data Policy, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. [FR Doc. 2019–00706 Filed 1–31–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4151–05–P PO 00000 Frm 00121 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 1167 DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Office of the Secretary Annual Update of the HHS Poverty Guidelines Department of Health and Human Services. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: This notice provides an update of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) poverty guidelines to account for last calendar year’s increase in prices as measured by the Consumer Price Index. DATES: Applicable Date: January 11, 2019 unless an office administering a program using the guidelines specifies a different effective date for that particular program. ADDRESSES: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Room 404E, Humphrey Building, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC 20201. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information about how the guidelines are used or how income is defined in a particular program, contact the Federal, state, or local office that is responsible for that program. For information about poverty figures for immigration forms, the Hill-Burton Uncompensated Services Program, and the number of people in poverty, use the specific telephone numbers and addresses given below. For general questions about the poverty guidelines themselves, contact Kendall Swenson, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Room 422F.5, Humphrey Building, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC 20201—telephone: (202) 690–7409—or visit http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/. For information about the percentage multiple of the poverty guidelines to be used on immigration forms such as USCIS Form I–864, Affidavit of Support, contact U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services at 1–800–375– 5283. For information about the Hill-Burton Uncompensated Services Program (free or reduced-fee health care services at certain hospitals and other facilities for persons meeting eligibility criteria involving the poverty guidelines), contact the Health Resources and Services Administration Information Center at 1–800–638–0742. You also may visit https://www.hrsa.gov/gethealth-care/affordable/hill-burton/ index.html/. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\01FEN1.SGM 01FEN1 1168 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 22 / Friday, February 1, 2019 / Notices For information about the number of people in poverty, visit the Poverty section of the Census Bureau’s website at https://www.census.gov/topics/ income-poverty/poverty.html or contact the Census Bureau’s Customer Service Center at 1–800–923–8282 (toll-free) or visit https://ask.census.gov for further information. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background Section 673(2) of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) of 1981 (42 U.S.C. 9902(2)) requires the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to update the poverty guidelines at least annually, adjusting them on the basis of the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI–U). The poverty guidelines are used as an eligibility criterion by Medicaid and a number of other Federal programs. The poverty guidelines issued here are a simplified version of the poverty thresholds that the Census Bureau uses to prepare its estimates of the number of individuals and families in poverty. As required by law, this update is accomplished by increasing the latest published Census Bureau poverty thresholds by the relevant percentage change in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI–U). The guidelines in this 2019 notice reflect the 2.4 percent price increase between calendar years 2017 and 2018. After this inflation adjustment, the guidelines are rounded and adjusted to standardize the differences between family sizes. In rare circumstances, the rounding and standardizing adjustments in the formula result in small decreases in the poverty guidelines for some household sizes even when the inflation factor is not negative. In cases where the year-toyear change in inflation is not negative and the rounding and standardizing adjustments in the formula result in reductions to the guidelines from the previous year for some household sizes, the guidelines for the affected household sizes are fixed at the prior year’s guidelines. As in prior years, these 2019 guidelines are roughly equal to the poverty thresholds for calendar year 2018 which the Census Bureau expects to publish in final form in September 2019. The poverty guidelines continue to be derived from the Census Bureau’s current official poverty thresholds; they are not derived from the Census Bureau’s Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM). The following guideline figures represent annual income. VerDate Sep<11>2014 21:23 Jan 31, 2019 Jkt 247001 2019 POVERTY GUIDELINES FOR THE administers the program is generally 48 CONTIGUOUS STATES AND THE responsible for deciding whether to use the contiguous-states-and-DC guidelines DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA Persons in family/household 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ Poverty guideline $12,490 16,910 21,330 25,750 30,170 34,590 39,010 43,430 For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $4,420 for each additional person. 2019 POVERTY GUIDELINES FOR ALASKA Persons in family/household 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ Poverty guideline $15,600 21,130 26,660 32,190 37,720 43,250 48,780 54,310 For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $5,530 for each additional person. 2019 POVERTY GUIDELINES FOR HAWAII Persons in family/household 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ ............................................ Poverty guideline $14,380 19,460 24,540 29,620 34,700 39,780 44,860 49,940 For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $5,080 for each additional person. Separate poverty guideline figures for Alaska and Hawaii reflect Office of Economic Opportunity administrative practice beginning in the 1966–1970 period. (Note that the Census Bureau poverty thresholds—the version of the poverty measure used for statistical purposes—have never had separate figures for Alaska and Hawaii.) The poverty guidelines are not defined for Puerto Rico or other outlying jurisdictions. In cases in which a Federal program using the poverty guidelines serves any of those jurisdictions, the Federal office that PO 00000 Frm 00122 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 9990 for those jurisdictions or to follow some other procedure. Due to confusing legislative language dating back to 1972, the poverty guidelines sometimes have been mistakenly referred to as the ‘‘OMB’’ (Office of Management and Budget) poverty guidelines or poverty line. In fact, OMB has never issued the guidelines; the guidelines are issued each year by the Department of Health and Human Services. The poverty guidelines may be formally referenced as ‘‘the poverty guidelines updated periodically in the Federal Register by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under the authority of 42 U.S.C. 9902(2).’’ Some federal programs use a percentage multiple of the guidelines (for example, 125 percent or 185 percent of the guidelines), as noted in relevant authorizing legislation or program regulations. Non-Federal organizations that use the poverty guidelines under their own authority in non-Federallyfunded activities also may choose to use a percentage multiple of the guidelines. The poverty guidelines do not make a distinction between farm and non-farm families, or between aged and non-aged units. (Only the Census Bureau poverty thresholds have separate figures for aged and non-aged one-person and twoperson units.) Note that this notice does not provide definitions of such terms as ‘‘income’’ or ‘‘family,’’ because there is considerable variation in defining these terms among the different programs that use the guidelines. These variations are traceable to the different laws and regulations that govern the various programs. This means that questions such as ‘‘Is income counted before or after taxes?’’, ‘‘Should a particular type of income be counted?’’, and ‘‘Should a particular person be counted as a member of the family/household?’’ are actually questions about how a specific program applies the poverty guidelines. All such questions about how a specific program applies the guidelines should be directed to the entity that administers or funds the program, since that entity has the responsibility for defining such terms as ‘‘income’’ or ‘‘family,’’ to the extent that these terms are not already defined for the program in legislation or regulations. Alex M. Azar, Secretary of Health and Human Services. [FR Doc. 2019–00621 Filed 1–31–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4150–05–P E:\FR\FM\01FEN1.SGM 01FEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 22 (Friday, February 1, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 1167-1168]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-00621]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Office of the Secretary


Annual Update of the HHS Poverty Guidelines

AGENCY: Department of Health and Human Services.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: This notice provides an update of the Department of Health and 
Human Services (HHS) poverty guidelines to account for last calendar 
year's increase in prices as measured by the Consumer Price Index.

DATES: Applicable Date: January 11, 2019 unless an office administering 
a program using the guidelines specifies a different effective date for 
that particular program.

ADDRESSES: Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and 
Evaluation, Room 404E, Humphrey Building, Department of Health and 
Human Services, Washington, DC 20201.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information about how the 
guidelines are used or how income is defined in a particular program, 
contact the Federal, state, or local office that is responsible for 
that program. For information about poverty figures for immigration 
forms, the Hill-Burton Uncompensated Services Program, and the number 
of people in poverty, use the specific telephone numbers and addresses 
given below.
    For general questions about the poverty guidelines themselves, 
contact Kendall Swenson, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning 
and Evaluation, Room 422F.5, Humphrey Building, Department of Health 
and Human Services, Washington, DC 20201--telephone: (202) 690-7409--or 
visit http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/.
    For information about the percentage multiple of the poverty 
guidelines to be used on immigration forms such as USCIS Form I-864, 
Affidavit of Support, contact U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services 
at 1-800-375-5283.
    For information about the Hill-Burton Uncompensated Services 
Program (free or reduced-fee health care services at certain hospitals 
and other facilities for persons meeting eligibility criteria involving 
the poverty guidelines), contact the Health Resources and Services 
Administration Information Center at 1-800-638-0742. You also may visit 
https://www.hrsa.gov/get-health-care/affordable/hill-burton/index.html/
.

[[Page 1168]]

    For information about the number of people in poverty, visit the 
Poverty section of the Census Bureau's website at https://www.census.gov/topics/income-poverty/poverty.html or contact the Census 
Bureau's Customer Service Center at 1-800-923-8282 (toll-free) or visit 
https://ask.census.gov for further information.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Section 673(2) of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) of 
1981 (42 U.S.C. 9902(2)) requires the Secretary of the Department of 
Health and Human Services to update the poverty guidelines at least 
annually, adjusting them on the basis of the Consumer Price Index for 
All Urban Consumers (CPI-U). The poverty guidelines are used as an 
eligibility criterion by Medicaid and a number of other Federal 
programs. The poverty guidelines issued here are a simplified version 
of the poverty thresholds that the Census Bureau uses to prepare its 
estimates of the number of individuals and families in poverty.
    As required by law, this update is accomplished by increasing the 
latest published Census Bureau poverty thresholds by the relevant 
percentage change in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers 
(CPI-U). The guidelines in this 2019 notice reflect the 2.4 percent 
price increase between calendar years 2017 and 2018. After this 
inflation adjustment, the guidelines are rounded and adjusted to 
standardize the differences between family sizes. In rare 
circumstances, the rounding and standardizing adjustments in the 
formula result in small decreases in the poverty guidelines for some 
household sizes even when the inflation factor is not negative. In 
cases where the year-to-year change in inflation is not negative and 
the rounding and standardizing adjustments in the formula result in 
reductions to the guidelines from the previous year for some household 
sizes, the guidelines for the affected household sizes are fixed at the 
prior year's guidelines. As in prior years, these 2019 guidelines are 
roughly equal to the poverty thresholds for calendar year 2018 which 
the Census Bureau expects to publish in final form in September 2019.
    The poverty guidelines continue to be derived from the Census 
Bureau's current official poverty thresholds; they are not derived from 
the Census Bureau's Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM).
    The following guideline figures represent annual income.

2019 Poverty Guidelines for the 48 Contiguous States and the District of
                                Columbia
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                              Poverty
               Persons in family/household                   guideline
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.......................................................         $12,490
2.......................................................          16,910
3.......................................................          21,330
4.......................................................          25,750
5.......................................................          30,170
6.......................................................          34,590
7.......................................................          39,010
8.......................................................          43,430
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $4,420 for 
each additional person.

                   2019 Poverty Guidelines for Alaska
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                              Poverty
               Persons in family/household                   guideline
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.......................................................         $15,600
2.......................................................          21,130
3.......................................................          26,660
4.......................................................          32,190
5.......................................................          37,720
6.......................................................          43,250
7.......................................................          48,780
8.......................................................          54,310
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $5,530 for 
each additional person.

                   2019 Poverty Guidelines for Hawaii
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                              Poverty
               Persons in family/household                   guideline
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.......................................................         $14,380
2.......................................................          19,460
3.......................................................          24,540
4.......................................................          29,620
5.......................................................          34,700
6.......................................................          39,780
7.......................................................          44,860
8.......................................................          49,940
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $5,080 for 
each additional person.
    Separate poverty guideline figures for Alaska and Hawaii reflect 
Office of Economic Opportunity administrative practice beginning in the 
1966-1970 period. (Note that the Census Bureau poverty thresholds--the 
version of the poverty measure used for statistical purposes--have 
never had separate figures for Alaska and Hawaii.) The poverty 
guidelines are not defined for Puerto Rico or other outlying 
jurisdictions. In cases in which a Federal program using the poverty 
guidelines serves any of those jurisdictions, the Federal office that 
administers the program is generally responsible for deciding whether 
to use the contiguous-states-and-DC guidelines for those jurisdictions 
or to follow some other procedure.
    Due to confusing legislative language dating back to 1972, the 
poverty guidelines sometimes have been mistakenly referred to as the 
``OMB'' (Office of Management and Budget) poverty guidelines or poverty 
line. In fact, OMB has never issued the guidelines; the guidelines are 
issued each year by the Department of Health and Human Services. The 
poverty guidelines may be formally referenced as ``the poverty 
guidelines updated periodically in the Federal Register by the U.S. 
Department of Health and Human Services under the authority of 42 
U.S.C. 9902(2).''
    Some federal programs use a percentage multiple of the guidelines 
(for example, 125 percent or 185 percent of the guidelines), as noted 
in relevant authorizing legislation or program regulations. Non-Federal 
organizations that use the poverty guidelines under their own authority 
in non-Federally-funded activities also may choose to use a percentage 
multiple of the guidelines.
    The poverty guidelines do not make a distinction between farm and 
non-farm families, or between aged and non-aged units. (Only the Census 
Bureau poverty thresholds have separate figures for aged and non-aged 
one-person and two-person units.)
    Note that this notice does not provide definitions of such terms as 
``income'' or ``family,'' because there is considerable variation in 
defining these terms among the different programs that use the 
guidelines. These variations are traceable to the different laws and 
regulations that govern the various programs. This means that questions 
such as ``Is income counted before or after taxes?'', ``Should a 
particular type of income be counted?'', and ``Should a particular 
person be counted as a member of the family/household?'' are actually 
questions about how a specific program applies the poverty guidelines. 
All such questions about how a specific program applies the guidelines 
should be directed to the entity that administers or funds the program, 
since that entity has the responsibility for defining such terms as 
``income'' or ``family,'' to the extent that these terms are not 
already defined for the program in legislation or regulations.

Alex M. Azar,
Secretary of Health and Human Services.
[FR Doc. 2019-00621 Filed 1-31-19; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4150-05-P