The transition of New Hampshire's Medicaid program to what’s called ‘managed care’ was supposed to be phased in over three years.
First, private companies would take over administration of medical care for more than 100,000 recipients. In year two, services for people with developmental disabilities, including supports such as 24-hour aides and housing would switch over. And then, lastly, newly eligible recipients through Medicaid expansion would get benefits arranged through the managed care companies.
But after delays in launching the program and in lawmakers reaching a deal on Medicaid expansion, the state now wants to switch things up.
Governor Hassan says the focus needs to be on this summer’s roll out of expanded Medicaid, which means putting off a planned December 1st start for long-term services.
"We want to make sure that we have a system that builds on the strength of our current systems," says Hassan. "So we are going to build on those strengths, and we are going to take the time to get it right."
The move affects about 12,000 developmentally disabled recipients, who have expressed concerns about changes in benefits. Advocates have also filed a legal challenge claiming they weren’t intended to be part of the managed care contracts.