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Healthcare and military spending bear the brunt of proposed cuts
The New York Times
President Barack Obama's effort to control federal spending would require the largest cuts from the government's biggest programs — healthcare and the military — while preserving or increasing spending on favored initiatives like early education, manufacturing and research.
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The White House wants to reverse $500 million in Medicaid cuts
The Washington Post
The White House wants to reverse $500 million in cuts to the Medicaid program meant to start in 2014, aiming to ensure that states have adequate funds to assist those that remain uninsured under the Affordable Care Act.
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Tavenner expects few states to choose premium assistance Medicaid option
due to high cost

InsideHealthPolicy.com
Acting CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner said she doubts many states will choose the route Arkansas seeks — using Medicaid-expansion funding as premium assistance for buying private insurance in its exchange — because the approach would cost more than merely expanding Medicaid. State officials recently said HHS is making premium assistance infeasible by requiring that states pick up the cost of Medicaid benefits that private insurance does not include.
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Arkansas House panel OKs Medicaid 'private option'
The Associated Press via San Francisco Chronicle
A proposal to have Arkansas use federal Medicaid funds to subsidize private health insurance for low-income residents won approval from a state House committee, but the plan faced opposition from some Republicans as it moved toward a vote in the full chamber.
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Florida Medicaid funding frenzy grows at Capitol
Health News Florida
Republicans who control the Florida House hint they're about to unveil their version of a health plan for the state's low-income uninsured between now and April 15. It appears that they still intend to turn down more than $50 billion in federal funds that would pay the tab.
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Ohio governor to continue push for Medicaid expansion
The Record-Courier
VideoBriefOhio Gov. John Kasich said he will continue to push for an expansion of Medicaid eligibility, a day after House Republicans removed related provisions from biennial budget legislation. House Democrats, meanwhile, said they will introduce separate legislation containing the governor's Medicaid expansion plan, with hopes the GOP-controlled chamber will bring it up for a floor vote.
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Mississippi governor: Proposed budget undercuts Medicaid expansion
Mississippi Business Journal
Top Mississippi Republicans say their opposition to Medicaid expansion is getting a boost from an unlikely source — President Barack Obama. The Democratic president released his proposed federal budget, which includes a one-year delay in reduction of "disproportionate share" Medicaid payments — money hospitals receive for treating large numbers of uninsured patients.
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Missouri governor seeks Medicaid answers from feds
The Kansas City Star
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon led a three-front charge to expand Missouri's Medicaid program, meeting privately with reluctant state senators, rallying publicly with hundreds of disability advocates and chatting with the nation's top healthcare official about whether particular Medicaid proposals could win federal approval.
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DFL spending cuts target hospitals, HMOs in Minnesota
Minnesota Public Radio
VideoBriefMinnesota House Democrats are proposing a health and human services budget that spares drastic cuts to poor people, the elderly and people with disabilities. But the plan would raise about $152 million from the state's hospitals and HMOs. It would also increase funding for the state's nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.
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Overnight health: Cost of exchanges doubles
The Hill
Setting up insurance exchanges — the centerpiece of President Barack Obama's healthcare reform law — is costing the Health and Human Services Department a whole lot more than it originally expected. According to budget documents recently released, the department expects to spend $4.4 billion on exchange grants to the states by the end of this year — double its estimates a year ago.
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Funding to enroll uninsured in new markets called 'drop in bucket'
Kaiser Health News
The Obama administration said it will award $54 million to community groups in 33 states to help people sign up for insurance in the new online health insurance marketplaces that open for enrollment Oct. 1. The size of the long-awaited grants offers a glimpse into the challenges of carrying out the health law in states such as Texas and Florida, which are relying on the federal government to run all or part of their marketplaces. States setting up their own marketplaces are getting separate funding from the federal government.
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WellCare sponsors community garden to help refugees enhance their
health and lives

PRLog
The WellCare Community Foundation has donated $5,000 to help the International Rescue Committee launch its New Roots program in Miami. WellCare's donation will be used to buy seedlings to start the programs' first community garden in Miami.
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Aetna job opportunity: Director of medical management for
Delaware Physicians Care

Aetna
Aetna is looking for a new director of medical management for Delaware Physicians Care. The position oversees the implementation and on-going execution of the strategic and operational business plan for the business segment's clinical operations, inbound/outbound call queue, implementation and/or plan sponsor operations. The position also coordinates business segment policies and procedures in support of financial, operational and service requirements.
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Healthcare and military spending bear the brunt of proposed cuts
The New York Times
President Barack Obama's effort to control federal spending would require the largest cuts from the government's biggest programs — healthcare and the military — while preserving or increasing spending on favored initiatives like early education, manufacturing and research.

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read more
Florida implements CMS' requirements; MCOs concerned about MLR
InsideHealthPolicy.com
Insurers are expressing concern that CMS' medical loss ratio requirements for Florida's Medicaid managed care waiver, which went into effect April 1 for the demonstration, indicate HHS could create a federal MLR requirement for managed care organizations, despite stakeholders' arguments that existing federal requirements render MLR requirements unnecessary for Medicaid plans.

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Scully: Medicaid managed care offers program integrity benefit for states
InsideHealthPolicy.com
As states move toward a Medicaid managed care model, one benefit for states is that plans, not states, are at risk for fraud, according to former CMS Administrator Thomas Scully. Plus, Medicaid managed care plans currently don't face the medical loss ratio requirements imposed by the health law on other private plans and which sources say could impede those plans' program integrity efforts by pegging many anti-fraud activities as administrative costs.

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'Opioid Dependence: A Chronic Relapsing Brain Disease,' a free webinar by Reckitt Benckiser | April 17 | 3 p.m. EST
MHPA
Joe Volpicelli, M.D., executive director at the Institute of Addiction Medicine and staff physician at Chestnut Hill Hospital, will help payers, patients and their communities better understand the chronic nature of opioid dependence.
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'Blurring Boundaries: Considering the Role of Medicaid-oriented Health Plans in 2014 and Beyond,' a free webinar by Deloitte Consulting | April 24 | 3 p.m. EST
MHPA
As 2014 nears, many states are grappling with their approaches to Medicaid expansion, the expanded use of managed care to cover new categories of Medicaid beneficiaries and coverage of subsidized individuals through their exchanges. At the same time, HHS is providing greater flexibility to states to help maximize the scope of coverage expansion and help minimize churn between Medicaid and subsidized exchange programs. As Medicaid health plans navigate this uncertainty, they should consider the impact of the expanding scope of subsidized coverage and the evolution of traditional Medicaid norms and boundaries.

This presentation will explore the strategic and operational implications for health plans as they address major changes ahead, including: the evolving subsidized coverage landscape for managed care in Medicaid and exchanges; exchanges as a potential future channel for Medicaid enrollment and plan selection; the possible convergence of the Medicaid and subsidized individual exchange markets in some states, including Medicaid bridge plan and premium assistance approaches.

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Recent webinar presentations from Deloitte, PwC, AmeriHealth Mercy available free on MHPA's website
MHPA
View PDFs or listen to audio for "The Duals Dilemma — Identifying Effective Care Management Approaches to Support Meaningful Improvement" by Deloitte Consulting, "The Race to 2014: Health Reform and the 30 Million Newly Insured" by PwC, "Optimizing Pharmaceutical Care in a Drug Therapy Management Program" by The AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies and more.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed our previous issues? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    MCOs concerned about federal MLR as Florida implements CMS' requirements (InsideHealthPolicy.com)
Scully: Medicaid managed care offers program integrity benefit for states (InsideHealthPolicy.com)
McCrory plan would open North Carolina's Medicaid business to private companies (The News & Observer)
Oregon shows costs of putting Medicaid enrollees in private coverage (Kaiser Health News)
HHS: States need waiver to privatize Medicaid expansion (The Hill)


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2012-2013 Best Practices Compendium on sale now
MHPA
MHPA's 2012-2013 Best Practices Compendium is the sixth edition of our annual publication that contains Medicaid health plans' best practices, as well as helpful resource information. Get yours today ($25 for members, $30 for non-members). To order, call 202-857-5720, or email us.
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MHPA
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