NORTH CAROLINA: NC Medicaid road map approved by House committee - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

NC Medicaid road map approved by House committee

Posted: Updated:
Department of Health and Human Services Department of Health and Human Services
RALEIGH, N.C. -

House Republicans pressed ahead on Thursday with a plan to overhaul Medicaid spending in North Carolina that has received the backing of Gov. Pat McCrory's administration and at least one key medical group. But they'll still have to convince senators the plan is worth backing in the General Assembly session's final weeks.

The House Health and Human Services Committee approved a plan that would replace the current model to pay for services through Medicaid, the federal-state health insurance program serving 1.7 million mostly poor children, older adults and people with disabilities.

Doctors and hospitals now receive Medicaid reimbursements for each treatment or procedure.

The House plan envisions that by mid-2020 a majority of Medicaid patients would be served by medical providers who receive a fixed amount of money for each patient they treat as a way to control Medicaid costs. Their profit or loss is based on how well they care for the patient and keep the person healthy.

Hospitals and physicians would assemble health plan networks covering as many as 14 regions of the state and could partner with insurance companies to administer them, said Rep. Nelson Dollar, R-Wake, a primary sponsor of the bill.

Legislators have struggled with Medicaid shortfalls in the hundreds of millions of dollars in recent years, prompting lawmakers and McCrory to seek an overhaul. Medicaid spends more than $13 billion annually, of which about $4 billion is state money.

"We are looking to move away from fee-for-service to provide greater predictability to slow the rate of cost growth," Dollar told the committee, adding "we know this transition will take time to make sure we do it right."

No one on the committee voted against the plan, which is a spinoff of the "accountable care organization" proposal offered in March by the Department of Health and Human Services and received strong backing from the North Carolina Medical Society and N.C. Hospital Association. The groups liked the McCrory agency plan because it wouldn't permit managed-care companies or entities from taking over.

Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Aldona Wos praised the House bill at the committee.

But Senate Republicans, who would have to agree to any overhaul, rejected McCrory's plan in its budget proposal three weeks ago and wants to embark on its own multiyear solution that included removing the Medicaid office out from under DHHS. Senate leader Phil Berger, R-Rockingham, said the House idea is an improvement but doesn't go far enough and takes six years to mature and find significant savings.

There are "some elements within it that look to be positive," Berger told reporters, but "they want to leave it up to DHHS to implement the reform."

The hospital association is on board with the House plan, group vice president Cody Hand said, in part because there's a slow rollout and it is drawn up so hospitals can keep receiving $1 billion in supplemental Medicaid payments annually.

"This bill sets a glide path for physicians and other providers to systematically transition to a new system of care delivery, and gives us time to make something like that work," said Chip Baggett, a lobbyist for the N.C. Medical Society, representing physicians.

But Baggett and representatives for patients with developmental disabilities or who serve that population said they didn't like an experimental provision in the bill. It would direct one of the state's public managed-care entities serving people with disabilities to receive a fixed per-patient amount to cover both physical and behavioral care.

The Senate may favor the experiment because it wants a plan with more whole-person treatment.

"I'm certainly hopeful the Senate will help move forward with (the House) reform," Dollar said.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

  • PoliticsMore>>

  • Union, NAACP hold Labor Day rallies across NC

    Union, NAACP hold Labor Day rallies across NC

    Monday, September 1 2014 12:00 PM EDT2014-09-01 16:00:29 GMT
    Union and civil rights leaders joined together for a series of rallies and news conferences across North Carolina on Labor Day.
    Union and civil rights leaders joined together for a series of rallies and news conferences across North Carolina on Labor Day.
  • Week of protests to wrap up at NC Capitol

    Week of protests to wrap up at NC Capitol

    Thursday, August 28 2014 7:13 PM EDT2014-08-28 23:13:38 GMT
    A coalition led by North Carolina's NAACP is wrapping up a week of demonstrations at the state capitol with a rally for voting rights.
    A coalition led by North Carolina's NAACP is wrapping up a week of demonstrations at the state capitol with a rally for voting rights.
  • Tillis to highlight NC teacher raises in TV ad

    Tillis to highlight NC teacher raises in TV ad

    Thursday, August 28 2014 7:11 PM EDT2014-08-28 23:11:43 GMT
    House Speaker Thom Tillis will highlight teacher pay raises approved by the North Carolina legislature this year in a television ad to first air on the eve of his first U.S. Senate debate with Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan.
    House Speaker Thom Tillis will highlight teacher pay raises approved by the North Carolina legislature this year in a television ad to first air on the eve of his first U.S. Senate debate with Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Industrial Accident at International Paper Company Leaves One Man Dead

    UPDATE: Victim Identified in Fatal Accident at International Paper Company

    UPDATE: Victim Identified in Fatal Accident at International Paper Company

    Monday, September 1 2014 11:10 AM EDT2014-09-01 15:10:49 GMT
    Savannah Fire Department and Savannah-Chatham Metro Police are on the scene of an industrial accident at the International Paper Company on West Lathrop Avenue in Savannah. Spokesman Mark Keller says Savannah Fire arrived on the scene and commenced CPR, but the man was unresponsive.Details are limited now. Stay with WSAV for the latest, as News Three's Ian Margol is on the scene learning more.
    Savannah Fire Department and Savannah-Chatham Metro Police are on the scene of an industrial accident at the International Paper Company on West Lathrop Avenue in Savannah. Spokesman Mark Keller says Savannah Fire arrived on the scene and commenced CPR, but the man was unresponsive.Details are limited now. Stay with WSAV for the latest, as News Three's Ian Margol is on the scene learning more.
  • Magic Mike Comes to Savannah

    Magic Mike Comes to Savannah

    What do you get when you combine male strippers, Channing Tatum movies and Forsyth Park?You get more than a thousand people lining up to be a part of the action!On Sunday, people from all over lined up at the stage on Forsyth Park to have a chance to be an extra in the upcoming film, Magic Mike XXL.The movie is just one of several to be filmed in Savannah in the near future (another is R.I.P.) and its casting director says that's no surprise."Savannah is such a gorgeous city to shoot in," say...
    What do you get when you combine male strippers, Channing Tatum movies and Forsyth Park?You get more than a thousand people lining up to be a part of the action!On Sunday, people from all over lined up at the stage on Forsyth Park to have a chance to be an extra in the upcoming film, Magic Mike XXL.The movie is just one of several to be filmed in Savannah in the near future (another is R.I.P.) and its casting director says that's no surprise."Savannah is such a gorgeous city to shoot in," say...
  • Highway Patrol Investigates Fatal Beaufort Crash

    Highway Patrol Investigates Fatal Beaufort Crash

    Highway Patrol Investigates Fatal Beaufort Crash

    Sunday, August 31 2014 5:26 PM EDT2014-08-31 21:26:13 GMT
    The South Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating a fatal crash that happened just after 8 p.m. on Saturday, on Highway 21 in Beaufort. According to Sgt. Bob Beres, a 1998 Mercedes Benz ran off of the right side of the road and overturned. 
    The South Carolina Highway Patrol is investigating a fatal crash that happened just after 8 p.m. on Saturday, on Highway 21 in Beaufort. According to Sgt. Bob Beres, a 1998 Mercedes Benz ran off of the right side of the road and overturned. 
Powered by WorldNow

1430 East Victory Drive
Savannah, GA 31404

Telephone: 912.651.0300
Fax: 912.651.0320
Email: newsemailalert@wsav.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.