All three providers in Kancare are losing money, which indicates future cuts in care to me. What’s also worrisome are the delays on pay, and the reduced emergency room visits. Reduced ER visits might seem like a good thing — unless people who really do need to visit are being talked out of it, in which case we might see increased mortality showing up later in the stats.
KanCare was launched with promises, some of them written into the contracts with Amerigroup Kansas Inc., United Healthcare Community Plan and Sunflower Health Plan, a subsidiary of Centene.
Medicaid eligibility would not be reduced. Payments to health care providers could not be lowered. Patients would not see cuts in benefits.
Brownback and his lieutenant governor, Jeff Colyer, also promised that in five years, the state would be able to show at least $1 billion worth of savings.
That was a bold pledge. No other state had attempted privatization of its entire Medicaid program. And where managed care had been tried, the record for improving the quality of care while lowering costs was spotty.
More than a year and a half in, KanCare’s record is mixed.