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DeWine announces plan for Medicaid managed care rebidding

Gov. Mike DeWine’s administration has unveiled plans for a long-awaited overhaul of the $28 billion Medicaid health-care program covering more than 3 million Ohioans (Source: “Wellness, quality of health care for poor Ohioans centerpiece of new Medicaid approach,” Columbus Dispatch, Oct. 1).

The Ohio Department of Medicaid seeks to update its managed-care setup with a focus on population health, meeting the needs of children with complex needs and reducing administrative hurdles for patients and health-care providers.

The state invited privately operated managed-care organizations to submit applications for new managed care contracts by Nov. 20. Contracts will be awarded early next year with a new system in place in 2022. About 90% of Medicaid beneficiaries are enrolled in managed care.

Medicaid Director Maureen Corcoran said the plan is largely based on input solicited by the department from beneficiaries, physicians, hospitals and other health care providers, along with managed-care plans over the last 18 months.

The director referred to concerns with the current system which has forced some families with children in need of intensive and costly services, either in their home or residential settings, to relinquish custody so they qualify for Medicaid because they can’t afford the cost on their own.

Under the plan, Ohio Rise, so-called multi-system youth would qualify for modified eligibility requirements, allowing them to receive assistance while remaining in their family’s custody.