Archive for February 2008

Administration opposition to HB-5617, Charter Oak fix bill

Testimony from Governor Rell, DSS Commissioner Starkowski, OHCA Commissioner Vogel, OPM Secretary Genuario, and DPH Commissioner Galvin in the Human Services Committee’s public hearing Tuesday strongly opposed any changes to their plans for Charter Oak. Attorney General Blumenthal, State Health Care Advocate Lembo and fourteen consumers and advocates, including this one, testified in favor of…

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Primary Care Access Authority Update

Adequate behavioral health services are vital to ensuring that Connecticut’s primary care infrastructure will work well for all our residents. This was the focus of yesterday’s Primary Care Access Authority meeting in Hartford. The session outlined some of the behavioral health services currently available in our state and showed the impact of healthcare staffing recruitment…

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Charter Oak/HUSKY update and notes from the bidder’s conference

DSS has posted an advocacy-style fact sheet about Charter Oak and opposing HB-5617 which would delay implementation to allow more thoughtful planning. HB-5617 will be heard in the Human Services Committee later this morning. The flyer includes several positive quotes about Charter Oak from letters and emails to the Governor’s office. But it leaves out…

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PCCM Update

At yesterday’s Appropriations’ Human Services Subcommittee meeting, DSS reported on progress toward implementing a pilot Primary Care Case Management program for HUSKY. DSS has been busy researching other states’ PCCM programs, including a January trip to MA to hear from several states’ about best practices and collecting PCCM provider contracts. DSS generously invited this advocate…

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HUSKY transition update

Also at yesterday’s Appropriations’ Human Services Subcommittee meeting, DSS reported on the HUSKY transition from four fully-capitated managed care organizations to two non-risk bearing companies and fee-for-service. The transition began Jan. 1st. Currently DSS is responsible for all decisions about medical services and MCOs are being paid only to administer the program. The transition was…

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Bills we are following

HB-5617, AA Delaying Implementation of and Making Revisions to the Charter Oak Plan and HB-5618, AAC Revisions to the HUSKY Plan, have been raised by the Human Services Committee. The public hearing for both is next Tuesday, February 26th at 10am in Room 2A of the LOB. Ellen Andrews

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CMS wants to give states more Medicaid flexibility

Yesterday, CMS published proposed rules allowing state Medicaid programs more flexibility in program design, similar to SCHIP programs. The change is meant to “implement the Administration’s goals of aligning Medicaid more closely with private market insurance and giving states more control over their Medicaid benefit packages.” If approved the rules would allow states to reduce…

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New Health Wonk Review

If you don’t have time to visit all the health care blogs every day, check out the Health Wonk Review. Every two weeks, health care bloggers take turns collecting the best of the blogs. Not only is it a time saver, but the different perspectives are fascinating. The latest issue is from GoozNews.com. Posted by…

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Health First Authority meeting update

At today’s meeting of the Health First Authority, their fifth, members expressed frustration with the group’s slow progress. The group was to hear presentations by representatives from other states working on health care reform, but that was postponed. The proposed facilitator, whose services are being donated by Academy Health, has changed. They are now considering…

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AG refuses DSS lawsuit against advocates, supports free speech rights

In a very strongly worded letter, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal rejected DSS Commissioner Mike Starkowski’s request to hire outside attorneys to sue three legal aid lawyers, Sheldon Toubman of New Haven Legal Assistance, Jamey Bell of Greater Hartford Legal Aid, and Randi Mezzy of CT Legal Services. The lawyers sent a letter to each of…

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