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Thursday, January 28, 2010

More than a card

With the possibility of an expanded Medicaid population imminent, how will newly-eligible people receive care?  Will there be enough health care providers and facilities to treat them?  

Deborah Kilstein from the Association for Community Affiliated Plans, Claudine Swartz from the National Association of Public Hospitals, and Phil Villers from Families USA, along with over 40 advocates from across the country, tackled this tough subject, and explored innovative strategies to increase access to care.

They discussed the myriad of ways Medicaid managed care plans and public hospitals can work to increase access to care now, and after health care reform implementation.

Claudine Swartz highlighted an example from North Carolina, where a community care initiative to make sure patients have health care homes has generated $60 to $160 million in savings over three years for the state's Medicaid program.

Deborah Kilstein provided examples from Medicaid managed care plans, one of which has increased the number of immunizations by over 40% in the last seven years. Many more examples can be found at http://communityplans.net/.

These thoughtful presentations provide a clear path to implementation and a health care system that will be ready to treat newly-covered patients.