Medicare’s struggling demonstration project that melds Medicare and Medicaid services and payments for individuals eligible for both programs got a boost last week.
Some positive statistics on Minnesota’s blended demo were highlighted in research by the Urban Institute and consultant RTI International for the U.S. Health and Human Services Department.
The dual eligibles in the Minnesota demonstration were found to be 48 percent less likely to have a hospital stay and 6 percent less likely to have an outpatient emergency department visit than a similar population just enrolled in Medicaid managed care. Enrollees in the demo were almost three times more likely to have a primary care visit and 16 percent less likely to have any assisted living services.
And, once enrolled, nearly all beneficiaries wanted to stay put, rather than switch to a Medicaid-only managed care plan, according to the report.
Minnesota is one of 13 states participating in the federal Medicare agency’s Financial Alignment Initiative. The concept is that better merging of Medicare and Medicaid services can help improve health outcomes for people enrolled in both programs.
The initiative has struggled amidst refusals to participate by beneficiaries and providers in some states. There are tales of nursing homes in Virginia, for example, stuffing residents’ opt-outs in envelopes and sending them to the agency. The state recently rejected the federal agency’s invitation to extend the program after initial three years expires.
Overall, just 30 percent of eligible beneficiaries are enrolled in the initiative, according to the Medicare Payment Advisiory Commission.
But Minnesota’s Senior Health Options seems to be working. It doesn’t hurt that the state had a head start over the other dozen initiative participants. Minnesota started the program as a pilot on its own almost 20 years ago and linked it to the federal initiative in 2013.
The question now is, Andrea Marsca of the National Association of Medicaid Directors told me: “How do we--states, federal policymakers, providers and advocates--adapt the model to fit the unique health care landscape in the states?”
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)