KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Medicaid: Penn. Enrollment Up; Fla. Hospitals Protesting Cuts; Fraud In Kansas

A selection of Medicaid news from Pennsylvania, Kansas, Florida and Washington state.

The Philadelphia Inquirer:  Medicaid Rolls Rose Even As Pa. Disqualified Many, New Calculation Shows
The Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare's stepped-up efforts over the summer to target waste, fraud, and abuse quickly bore fruit in the fall. Adult Medicaid enrollment alone was down 109,000 through November. … Now, DPW has suddenly changed its reporting method. Revised calculations show a decline of just 6,000 participants for the same period. And when December is added in, enrollment is up by 23,000 since August (Sapatkin, 1/26).

Kansas Health Institute News: Attorney Says Bilking Medicaid Is Easy
The head of the Medicaid fraud unit at the Kansas Attorney General's Office told legislators it was easy to cheat programs that provide in-home services for the disabled and the frail elderly. ... (Deputy Attorney General Loren Snell) said his office has about 60 active cases, most of which involved case managers or attendant care workers who had figured out how to bill the state's Medicaid program for services that weren't provided (Ranney, 1/25). 

Tampa Bay Times: Florida Hospitals Bracing For More Medicaid Cuts
(Gov. Rick) Scott wants to cut Medicaid spending by nearly 10 percent this year to free up funds for education. He says health spending is a fair target because it has grown far more rapidly than other government spending ... Tampa General Hospital and All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg would each face estimated cuts of more than $70 million, according to the Florida Hospital Association. But three Pinellas HCA hospitals — Largo Medical Center, St. Petersburg General and Northside — would each get a few million more (Martin and Mitchell, 1/25).

Lund Report: PeaceHealth Loses Medicaid Contract With Columbia United Providers In Washington
Regence Blue Shield isn’t the only insurance company in Washington that won’t participate in Medicaid during fiscal 2012-13. Columbia United Providers and Premera Health Plan, which actually submitted bids on the proposed contract, have been forced out by the Washington Health Authority – unlike Regence which withdrew after providing care to pregnant women and children since 2002 (Lund-Muzikant, 1/25).

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