Administration pushing forward for Jan. 1 KanCare launch

Meeting with federal officials described as "productive"

0 | KanCare, Medicaid-CHIP

— Administration officials today said they would continue to push for a Jan. 1 launch for KanCare and plan to begin running a software program on Wednesday designed to "auto assign" Medicaid beneficiaries to the KanCare managed care plans.

"We will take time to assess the results and then communicate with members about their initial assignment," said Sherriene Jones-Sontag, spokesperson for Gov. Sam Brownback.

Brownback officials today also described their discussions Thursday with federal officials in Baltimore about the state's Section 1115 waiver application as "productive."

"We had productive conversations with our partners at CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) in Baltimore and look forward to continuing to work with them to ensure KanCare is a success," Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer said in a prepared statement. “The State of Kansas will go forward with activities to ensure our readiness as we continue to work towards a Jan. 1 start date."

The officials did not provide specific information about the status of the managed care companies' respective provider networks or the outcomes of the readiness reviews of the companies that were scheduled for completion this week. The companies had an Oct. 12 deadline for demonstrating to state officials that they had achieved 90 percent "network adequacy."

But Miranda Steele, a spokesperson for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment said, "everything is still on track with the planned readiness activities."

KanCare is Brownback's plan to move most of the state's 380,000 Medicaid enrollees, including the mentally ill and people in nursing homes, into managed care plans operated by three insurance companies: Amerigroup, United Healthcare and Sunflower State Health Plan, a subsidiary of Centene. The Kansas Medicaid program is expected to cost about $3.2 billion next year. Brownback officials have predicted that KanCare will save the state and federal governments $1 billion over five years while improving the health outcomes for Medicaid clients.

KHI News Service coverage of KanCare

Hutchinson Clinic's letter throws a curve to KanCare open enrollment (1/28/14)
National Disability Council again urges CMS to hold off on Kansas DD carve-in (1/14/14)
DD carve-in not approved for Jan. 1 launch (12/27/13)
National Council on Disability urges one-year delay of KanCare DD carve-in (12/13/13)
KDADS chief describes lessons learned with KanCare (12/5/13)
Other states watching Kansas as it implements ‘unprecedented’ Medicaid model (12/5/13)
KanCare reimbursement problems continue for providers (11/25/13)
Kansas dental program for children on hold because of KanCare MCO (11/11/13)
Kansas Medicaid providers complain to oversight committee (10/7/13)
Wichita hospital execs describe problems with KanCare (8/29/13)
KanCare to adopt “health home” model for treating mentally ill (7/22/13)
Kentucky’s rush into Medicaid managed care: A cautionary tale for other states (7/18/13)
DD groups largely reconciled to KanCare carve-in (7/15/13)
Advocates urge more government oversight of Medicaid managed care (7/8/13)
Independent pharmacists push for KanCare contract enforcement (7/1/13)
Payroll agents for the disabled on Medicaid say they are struggling under KanCare (6/3/13)
Personal Care Attendants: KanCare's unheralded workers (5/20/13)
House GOP leaders pen letter backing DD supports in KanCare (5/17/13)
More than 1,000 rally at Statehouse for DD carve-out (5/8/13)
Nothing to be done about coverage gap in states not expanding Medicaid, feds say (4/29/13)
As KanCare continuity of care period ends, problems persist; legislators starting to hear about it (4/8/13)
Advocates raise concerns over possible reductions in KanCare services (3/28/13)
Conferees agree on KanCare oversight committee (3/28/13)
DD advocates push to extend KanCare "carve-out" (3/20/13)
Safety-net clinics struggling with KanCare (3/4/13)
Major medical provider groups ask for longer KanCare transition (2/13/13)
Lawmakers and providers assess KanCare transition (1/28/13)
Five-part series: "Lower cost and better care: Can KanCare deliver?" (1/14/13)
Independence of KanCare ombudsman questioned (1/7/13)
KanCare special terms and conditions spelled out by CMS in a document (12/28/12)
KanCare workforce shift hampering local agencies (12/10/12)
Governor announces KanCare approval by feds (12/7/12)
More KanCare implementation details outlined (12/3/12)
Federal officials say they hope to act soon on KanCare waiver request (11/28/12)
New KanCare info included on state website (11/20/12)
Groups call for KanCare delay (11/8/12)
Go/no-go date looms this week for KanCare (10/15/12)
KanCare benefit packages outlined (9/26/12)
Provider groups nervous about lack of KanCare details (9/13/12)
KanCare Confidential (9/10/12)
KanCare contracts awarded (6/27/12)
KanCare plan panned again at public hearing (6/20/12)
Wichita KanCare forum draws more than 200 (6/19/12)
Medicaid makeover: Can Kansas learn from Kentucky? (6/11/12)
Hundreds protest inclusion of disability services in KanCare (4/25/12)
Counties weighing in on KanCare (4/9/12)
Hospital administrator to chair KanCare Advisory Council (3/29/12)
Brownback Medicaid makeover an “ambitious” plan (3/28/12)
KanCare bidders heavily courting Medicaid providers (3/19/12)
Legislators push to delay KanCare start (3/7/12)
Brownback announces managed care for all in Medicaid (11/8/11)
Kansas Medicaid makeover in the works (3/7/11)


Full Medicaid and KanCare coverage



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