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Archive for September 2008

DSS asks CMS for a HUSKY delay

The administration has asked the federal government for a four month delay for moving HUSKY families into the new HMOs. DSS and the two new HMOs, AmeriChoice (United Health Care) and Aetna Better Health, have been criticized for having inadequate provider networks and for not devoting enough time to building those networks. The third HMO…

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Drug company Cephalon will pay CT $6 million fine

CT’s Attorney General announced yesterday that Cephalon, Inc. will pay $425 million nationally and $6.13 million to CT for illegally marketing three drugs causing serious complications in some patients including seizures, respiratory depression, addiction and death. The off-label marketing of the drugs for uses not approved by the FDA caused sales of the drugs to…

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Critical Condition documentary showing tomorrow night

PBS’ POV series tomorrow night at 9pm will be, Critical Condition, describeing the barriers to accessing care for America’s uninsured. A streaming version of the film will be online until Nov. 11th. Directly following at 10:30 pm will be RX for Change, a MacNeil/Lehrer Special, a discussion of Americans’ top health insurance concerns. June 5th…

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Legislature and Comptroller announce audit of DSS

Legislative leaders and Comptroller Nancy Wyman announced today that the Comptroller’s office will conduct an audit of DSS to eliminate waste and over-budgeting. Specific concerns include difficulties tracking expenses, over $100 million in DSS carry-forward requests, turmoil in the HUSKY program, start up costs of the Charter Oak Health Plan, and funds appropriated for programs…

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PCCM public hearing and RFA out

The Appropriations and Human Services Committees held a public hearing today on DSS’ proposal for a PCCM pilot for HUSKY. Over thirty legislators came to hear Commissioner Mike Starkowski and Director of Medical Administration David Parrella outline their plans for the program. Legislators universally expressed enthusiasm for the plan and commended DSS for faithfully implementing…

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CTHPP is seeking a Program Director

The CT Health Policy Project is hiring a Director of Programs. The position involves coordinating consumer assistance and educational programming for the Project. There are opportunities for policy analysis and advocacy as well. Qualifications include organizational and interpersonal skills, resourcefulness, ability to work independently and take initiative, and most important – enthusiasm and commitment to…

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DSS answers Medicaid Managed Care Council on HUSKY and Charter Oak costs

Yesterday’s Medicaid Managed Care Council was standing room only for what is generally a dry actuarial discussion about rate setting. Questions from legislators and advocates were pointed but answers were fuzzy. First, representatives from Shramm and Raleigh, DSS’ no-bid financial contractors, described how Charter Oak’s costs and benefit package were arrived at. The original bids…

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Behavioral Health Partnership/HUSKY update

At Wednesday’s BHP Oversight Council meeting, DSS reported HUSKY MCO enrollment numbers in Middlesex County, the first to go “on-line” back to managed care plans. Voluntary enrollment in the MCOs started Sept. 1st; at the end of November it will be mandatory. Of Blue Care members, 170 (41%) chose Aetna Better Health, 28 chose AmeriChoice…

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PCCM hearing date set

The mandated public hearing on DSS’ Primary Care Case Management proposal has been set. The hearing of the Human Services and Appropriations Committees will be September 25th at 11am at the Legislative Office Building. If you cannot come and would like to submit comments, the Chairs of the Committees are Representative Peter Villano, Senator Jonathan…

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Authorities holding public hearings

The Health First and Primary Care Authorities will hold public hearings on their mandates to develop options for health coverage of all CT residents and to assess the capacity of CT’s primary care system. All are 6:30 to 8:30 pm. 9/17 Putnam Middle School 9/18 Norwalk City Hall 9/23 Torrington City Hall Auditorium 9/24 CHA…

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