KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

Wis. Study Finds Problems In Medicaid Oversight

Kansas lawmakers grilled state officials about Gov. Sam Brownback's plans to streamline the state bureaucracy. In Wis., the legislative analysis found that private contractors are taking on an increasing share of the work of administering Medicaid programs.

Kansas Health Institute News: Legislators Pose Questions About Medicaid Managed Care
Members of the Senate Ways and Means Committee today put questions to administration officials about Gov. Sam Brownback's plan to reorganize the state's social service agencies as part of his move to reform the state's Medicaid program. Dr. Robert Moser, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, which oversees the Medicaid program, and Mark Dugan, chief of staff for Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, told committee members that the administration had reconsidered its earlier decision to move various programs from KDHE and the Juvenile Justice Authority to the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services (Ranney and Shields, 12/20).

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Medicaid Contractor Spending Increases
As Wisconsin's health programs for the poor have ballooned in recent years, the state has relied increasingly on private contractors to administer the programs, completed fewer investigations into potential fraud and not taken full advantage of cheaper ways of delivering health care, a new audit has found. The report released Tuesday by the Legislative Audit Bureau found that as of June, there were at least three times as many contract workers working on Medicaid health programs as there were state workers. Over the past four years, payments to private vendors for Medicaid nearly have doubled and in some cases increased beyond the spending limits written into the state's budget, the audit found (Stein, 12/20).

AP/MSNBC: Audit Of Wis. Medicaid Program Raises Concerns
An audit of Wisconsin's $7.5 billion Medicaid program says that oversight of vendors used to administer the various programs as well as monitoring of contracts could be improved. The report by the nonpartisan Legislative Audit Bureau was released Tuesday. ... The audit says the state's budgeting and financial management practices have not kept pace with the growth in the size and complexity of the Medicaid program (12/20).

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