- The Progressive Pulse - http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org -

Fixing Medicaid for the better

[1]Like all states, Wisconsin felt a crushing pressure to save money in Medicaid in 2009.

The governor and legislature decided to cut as much as $625 million from the program. Slashing public programs is nothing new. But what is interesting is how the state achieved its savings.

Medicaid directed a 6-month process dubbed the Rate Reform Project where advocates, academics, providers and others met and hashed out how the program could be made more efficient. In theory this is an attractive idea, as we know there are ways to save money and improve care.

In the end Wisconsin not only cut costs, it expanded coverage. You can read the entire story at Stateline [2].

I’m not sure if a similar initiative could succeed in North Carolina. I’m not even sure it succeeded in Wisconsin, but I would be interested in hearing from people who may know. I could see how the process here could get hijacked by anti-government zealots or special interests that want more money to deliver less care.

Nevertheless, it’s an interesting project, and maybe something worth considering.