Thursday, July 7, 2011

KHI News Service Article: "Governor says he hopes clients are spared with coming Medicaid cuts"

Read the full article written by Mike Shields, KHI News Service on July 6, 2011.

 — Gov. Sam Brownback today said his administration will try to protect services to Medicaid beneficiaries even while making cuts in the program's spending.
"The end objective is to not cut any clients who are receiving Medicaid support," Brownback said while flanked by members of his cabinet at a press conference called to describe what his administration has done during its first six months. "That's what we want to try to protect is the people who need Medicaid support. That's the real ones we're trying to protect as much as possible."
Dr. Robert Moser, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health Environment, said the administration's goal is to curb Medicaid's costs while at the same time improving "health outcomes" for the program's beneficiaries.
"Better outcomes at lower cost"
"We truly believe there are probably some efficiencies and program designs that we should be implementing that can deliver better health outcomes at lower cost and that really is our goal going forward," Moser said, but noting that the efficiencies, "have to be impactful."
Meanwhile, none of the assembled officials would say there won't be future cuts in reimbursements to Medicaid providers.
Some top ranking officials at the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services recently sent emails to some agency contractors warning of a pending 2.5 percent cut in their Medicaid reimbursements. Those cut apparently haven't happened yet, but neither Brownback nor SRS Secretary Rob Siedlecki when asked directly about the cuts ruled out the possibility they are coming.
Both men said they were awaiting the conclusion of a series of public forums being staged by administration officials as they develop a plan for restructuring the Medicaid program." 

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