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Health spending grows at half pre-recession level in 2011
Bloomberg    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Healthcare spending in the U.S. grew at less than half the pre-recession level for the third straight year, as employers shifted more costs to strapped workers and state governments limited payouts for the poor. Spending on hospital visits, medications and other care grew 3.9 percent to $2.7 trillion in 2011, matching the slowest growth in 52 years of record keeping, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said in a report in the journal Health Affairs. More



Free webinar by LexisNexis 'Why Identity Management Matters to Medicaid' | 1 p.m. EST Tomorrow Jan. 9
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Government efforts are driving much of the focus on identity management — a primary concern for the healthcare industry. Clint Fuhrman, director of Government Health Care Programs for LexisNexis Risk Solutions, addresses identity management — medical identity theft, improper access to sensitive records, liability issues, privacy and other issues — in a FREE 60-minute webinar. More

White House, GOP draw red lines in debate on US debt limit, vow not to budge
The Associated Press via The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Struggling for the upper hand in the next round of debt talks, Republicans and Democrats this weekend drew lines in the sand they said they’d never cross when it comes to the U.S. debt limit. The tough talk on the Sunday morning talk shows doesn't bode well for voters who are frustrated by the political gridlock. "I believe we need to raise the debt ceiling, but if we don't raise it without a plan to get out of debt, all of us should be fired," said U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. More

Surpluses await some states in 2013 sessions
Pew Center on the States    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
With a $500 million budget surplus and $2 billion in reserves, Indiana Gov.-elect Mike Pence has pledged to give back some of that money when he takes office next week by cutting personal income taxes. "An across-the-board tax cut for all Hoosiers would send a strong signal that we are managing our funds wisely and also reducing the tax burden on our taxpayers and businesses," the former U.S. Congressman said while campaigning to replace outgoing fellow Republican Mitch Daniels as governor. Indiana is not alone going into the 2013 legislative session with extra money in the coffers and policy makers figuring out how to spend it. Through a combination of downsizing, changes in tax policy and sometime the luck of having energy and commodities, some states have weathered the recession better than others. More

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Florida governor meets Sebelius on healthcare, bridles at cost
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Florida Gov. Rick Scott kept up his attacks on Obamacare even after meeting U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, complaining that federal healthcare reforms could cost Florida $26 billion over the next decade. Scott, a vocal critic of the Affordable Care Act also known as Obamacare, told reporters following the meeting in Washington that Medicaid program costs, which state officials say could mushroom over the next 10 years, continue to be his major concern. More

Plans for health insurance exchanges approved by White House for 7 more states
The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Obama administration approved plans by seven states to create health insurance exchanges, the new marketplaces at the heart of the Affordable Care Act. With this final round of approvals, the White House has signed off on blueprints by 17 states and the District to operate their own exchanges in 2014, as long as they continue to meet certain benchmarks over the course of the next year. More

Connecticut, The Insurance Capital, Moves Ahead With Exchange Plans
Kaiser Health News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Five health plans — including all the major insurers in the state's individual and small group markets — have told Connecticut’s health insurance exchange that they plan to offer policies in the state's new online marketplace this fall. Exchange officials said that Aetna, United Healthcare, Anthem, ConnectiCare and a new nonprofit co-op owned by the Connecticut State Medical Society have filed letters of intent to sell coverage, exchange officials said. More



Colorado governor: State will expand Medicaid
Colorado Public Radio via Kaiser Health News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Gov. John Hickenlooper said Colorado will expand its Medicaid program as much as the federal healthcare law calls for, and he said the state won't have to spend any extra money to make it happen. The federal health overhaul law requires states to significantly expand the health care program for the poor, but when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on the Affordable Care Act last June, it said states couldn't be forced to take the new Medicaid money, essentially making that expansion optional. More

Incoming Montana governor includes Medicaid expansion in budget
The Associated Press via Modern Healthcare    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Montana's Gov.-elect Steve Bullock unveiled budget changes that include increased education funding and keeping intact a proposed expansion of Medicaid under the federal healthcare law. Bullock released the changes to outgoing Gov. Brian Schweitzer's two-year budget proposal as lawmakers arrived in Helena in advance of the start of the legislative session. Bullock's proposal, which largely mirrors fellow Democrat Schweitzer's offering, faces a tough road through Republican-run legislative chambers. More

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Idaho governor rejects Medicaid expansion, supports personal property tax repeal
StateImpact Idaho    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter told lawmakers and the public that he wants to repeal the state's tax on business personal property, which generates roughly $140 million for local government each year. He also said he does not support an expansion of Medicaid eligibility in Idaho, at least not at this time. StateImpact talked through those two significant policy points with Boise State Public Radio host Samantha Wright. More

Slim chance of Medicaid expansion in Mississippi
The Associated Press via The Sun Herald    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Mississippi lawmakers can expect to be pulled in opposite directions this year on a big-dollar question of whether to expand Medicaid. Gov. Phil Bryant and fellow Republicans who lead the House and Senate say they oppose expansion because they believe the state can't afford to put millions more dollars into the federal-state health insurance program for the needy. On the other side, health advocates say Mississippi — one of the poorest states in the nation — can't afford to turn down billions of federal dollars that would come with expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Hospitals and other providers want lawmakers to consider the economic benefits that could come from an influx of money from Washington. More



Arkansas officials: There's no rush on Medicaid expansion issue
Arkamsas Business    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The incoming leaders of the Arkansas House and Senate say they don't see any rush to consider expanding Medicaid's eligibility under the federal healthcare law and say they'll do whatever it takes to avoid cuts to the program proposed to fill a shortfall in its budget. Incoming Senate President Michael Lamoureux and House Speaker Davy Carter said they still have unanswered questions about the proposal to add about 250,000 people to the state's Medicaid rolls. The two Republicans said they're not yet sold on the idea. More

Amerigroup now serving members in Kansas
Amerigroup Corporation    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Amerigroup, a wholly owned subsidiary of WellPoint Inc., announced it has begun serving members statewide in Kansas as of Jan. 1. Amerigroup Kansas is one of three health plans selected by the state to administer KanCare, helping to coordinate physical and behavioral healthcare, as well as nursing facility and home and community-based services to approximately 380,000 residents enrolled in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program. More


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Free webinar by Navigant Healthcare: 'Medicaid Managed Care Program Management: The Next Generation' | 11a.m. EST Jan. 16
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
There has been "skepticism" about managed care in the policy process and in the public at large. Medicaid Health Plans need to help policy makers understand the value of MCOs and be able to design delivery systems where MCOs can be innovative and valued leaders in delivery and management of Medicaid services. The webinar will cover what MCOs need to do to be ready for the next generation of Medicaid managed care, emphasizing the need to use value-based purchasing to drive for improvement and achievement. Presented by Anne Jacobs, managing director, Navigant Healthcare. More

Insights webinar by Baxter: 'The Hemophilia Community and the Voice of Advocacy' | 11 a.m. EST Jan. 23
Baxter    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In 2013, Medicaid managed care will be affected in a variety of ways — from the shakeout of the 2012 elections and the fiscal cliff negotiations to the continued implementation of the Affordable Care Act. This presentation will address the current status and implications of many outstanding state and federal decisions affecting Medicaid managed care, including: state Medicaid expansion, Health Insurance Exchange decisions and level of integration, and CMS regulatory guidance on Medicaid reforms. Presentations by Jim Hardy and Sarah Wiley of Deloitte Consulting LLP. More

Watch, listen to the Sept. 18 webinar, 'Importance of Coordinated Care in the Management of Members with Hemophilia,' free on MHPA's website
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The presentation on coordinating care in hemophilia and how to improve outcomes and reduce costs by Jeff Januska, PharmD, pharmacy director at CenCal Health and Dr. Steven Pipe, associate professor, Department of Pediatrics and the Department of Pathology, University of Michigan, now is available on MHPA's website.



Free webinar by Deloitte: 'The Fiscal Cliff, ACA, and Medicaid Managed Care' | 2 p.m. EST Jan. 29
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In 2013, Medicaid managed care will be affected in a variety of ways — from the shakeout of the 2012 elections and the fiscal cliff negotiations to the continued implementation of the Affordable Care Act. This presentation will address the current status and implications of many outstanding state and federal decisions affecting Medicaid managed care, including: state Medicaid expansion, Health Insurance Exchange decisions and level of integration, and CMS regulatory guidance on Medicaid reforms. Presentations by Jim Hardy and Sarah Wiley of Deloitte Consulting LLP. More

Free webinar by AMFC: 'Optimizing Pharmaceutical Care and Measuring Outcomes in a Collaborative Drug Therapy Management Program' | 2 p.m. EST Jan. 30
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Medication-related problems and medication mismanagement are massive public health problems in the U.S. Experts estimate that 1.5 million preventable adverse events occur each year that result in $177 billion in injury and death. In response to these problems, PerformRx, in collaboration with the AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies, successfully have developed a collaborative Drug Therapy Management program that has demonstrated significant reductions in emergency room visits and inpatient admissions, as well as significant costs savings. More

Free webinar by PwC: 'Getting to know the 30 million newly insured: New patients equals new challenges' | 2 p.m. EST Feb. 6
PwC    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In the wake of the Supreme Court's ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act, approximately 30 million uninsured Americans under age 65 stand to gain coverage under the law. States are making two crucial decisions: Whether to expand Medicaid coverage, and which type of health insurance marketplace to create — state-run, state-federal run, or federally facilitated. As decisions are made and plans put in place, one thing is certain: When the exchange population is combined with the new Medicaid beneficiaries, the result will be a distinctly different customer base for the health sector, bringing with it many new challenges and opportunities. More

Keeping You Healthy video: CentAccount by Centene
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The CentAccount program promotes personal healthcare responsibility in Centene's membership by offering financial incentives. A consumer-driven incentive program designed to strengthen the relationships between Centene health plan members and their medical home, it increases the utilization of preventive services, reduces reliance on the ER, and increases continuity of care, resulting in better health outcomes for members. Rewarding members for targeted healthy behaviors increases the likelihood that such behaviors will be continued through positive reinforcement. Centene Senior VP Aparna Aburri discusses this innovative program with the MHPA Center for Best Practices. More

MHPA CEO Thomas Johnson to speak at Strategic Solutions Network's 4th Annual 'Medicaid Innovations Forum' | Feb. 5-7 | Orlando, Fla.
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Medicaid Innovations is designed to be the meeting place for all participants in the Medicaid universe who want to participate, share and learn about innovations that promote quality improvement, cost reduction and transformation in the face of reform. Use discount code MHPA when registering to receive a $200 discount off the current rate. For complete agenda and to register, click here.



MHPA CEO Thomas Johnson keynote speaker at the 6th Annual Leadership Summit on Medicaid Managed Care | Feb 25-27 | Arlington, VA
The World Congress    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
After, and in spite of, the political uncertainty of an election year, payment transformation continues in Medicaid as well as the development of integrated care delivery models industrywide. Now more than ever Medicaid Managed Care plans must continue to show their value. Attend the 6th Annual Leadership Summit on Medicaid Managed Care to hear the latest updates. MHPA Members, receive a $200 discount when you register online or at 800-767-9499 with promo code MHPA200. Discount not valid on government rate.

MHPA CEO Thomas Johnson to speak at 21st Annual Medicaid Managed Care Congress | May 20-22 | Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor Hotel | Baltimore, Md.
MHPA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Collaborate and drive innovation to move the Medicaid industry forward. Implement the ACA, increase quality, grow membership, and strengthen financials. Register with code XP1826MHPA and save 25 percent. More

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