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REPORT: Medicaid Managed LTSS Contain Benefits and Risks

November 29, 2012

A Community Catalyst report (pdf) analyzes Medicaid managed long-term services and supports (LTSS) in 16 states, and offers lessons to the remaining states that have still not implemented such programs.

The report, entitled “Putting Consumers First: Promising Practices for Medicaid Managed Long-Term Services and Supports,” was published in November 2012.

Project Director Alice Dembner, the report’s author, argues that “at its best, managed care could reduce fragmentation of care, expand access to community-based services, and increase the quality and efficiency of services.”

However, there are risks involved for consumers, she writes.

States could use managed care to “cut services, squeeze out community providers, or medicalize support services,” Dembner warns.

The report suggests ways that consumers, advocates, and other LTSS stakeholders can work to ensure quality managed care if their state chooses to implement it.

One of the ways to ensure quality LTSS, Dembner notes, is to have a well trained home care workforce that earns a fair wage.

Unfortunately, she writes, “most states face worker shortages and high worker turnover due to low pay and little training.”

— by Matthew Ozga

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