Alabama: Senate Passes Major Medicaid LTC Reforms Estimated To Save $1.5 Billion within 10 Years

The Alabama Senate and the House Health Committee have passed a bill aimed at reining in the rising cost of care for Medicaid beneficiaries in nursing homes and long-term care facilities. The bill proposes organizing nursing home and long-term care providers into managed care networks called Integrated Care Networks (ICNs), which will loosely resemble the framework of the State's Regional Care Organizations. Under the bill, nursing homes and long-term care facilities would provide care at a capitated rate and the proportion of long-term care provided through home-based care versus in nursing homes would increase from 25% to 50%. Supporters claim that the State will save $1.5 billion within ten years if the ICNs are established by October 1st, 2018. The bill must be passed by the full House to be sent to the governor.

New Hampshire: Hospitals See Reduced Uninsured Visits after Medicaid Expansion

Nine months after the launch of New Hampshire’s Medicaid expansion, emergency room visits from uninsured patients has declined by 22% (compared to a 17% decline the year before expansion) while uninsured hospital inpatient and outpatient admissions declined by 27% and 15% respectively, reports the New Hampshire Hospital Association. The Association credits the New Hampshire Health Protection Program (NHHPP) for the developments, stating, “These are positive trends, which show the NHHPP is working to bend the health care cost curve, reduce cost shifting to private health insurance and eliminate the so-called ‘hidden tax’ on health care.” Just over 39,000 individuals had enrolled in NHHPP through April.