Ohio releases report card on Medicaid managed-care plans

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – All five managed-care plans serving poor and disabled Ohioans on Medicaid have an average score when it comes to how happy patients are with their doctors, according to the state’s first report card of managed-care plans.

Officials launched the report card to give those selecting plans data so they can make a decision, The Columbus Dispatch reported.

“The idea was to present individuals, when they have to pick a managed-care plan, some kind of data so they can select a plan,” said state Medicaid Director John McCarthy. “It’s our first attempt at transparency and creates some healthy competition” among plans.

The plans received one, two or three stars in each of five categories in the report card: access to care; doctors’ communication and service; keeping kids healthy; helping those living with chronic illness; and women’s care.

The report was based on patient surveys and data collected by the state, and will be updated annually.

Cathy Levine, executive director of the Universal Health Care Action Network, a consumer-advocacy nonprofit, said Medicaid enrollees often pick a plan based on word of mouth or are assigned one. Beneficiaries have 30 days to pick a managed-care plan or have one assigned. About 40 percent of enrollees are auto-enrolled.

The report card will offer “guidance on selecting a plan that best addresses their needs and avoiding plans with deficiencies of performance,” she said.

The plans were rated based on comparisons with each other so all would not be able to receive perfect scores or the lowest ones, McCarthy said.

Of the 3 million Ohioans enrolled in Medicaid, about 80 percent are in managed care.

Information from: The Columbus Dispatch

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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