No choices in managed care for Medicaid patients in Iowa

For now, there's no choice for Medicaid patients in Iowa when it comes to managed care.

The Iowa Department of Human Services posted a notice on their website yesterday stating that patients who had Amerihealth Caritas won't be able to choose who manages their care.  That's because one of the two remaining managed care companies, Amerigroup Iowa, isn't taking new patients. 

Instead, Iowa DHS says they're automatically switching all former Amerihealth Caritas Medicaid patients to the other managed care company, UnitedHealthcare, effective December 1, 2017.

Iowa's federal waiver allowing managed care requires that patients have a choice of companies.  But the Iowa DHS says they've gotten the OK from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to temporarily only have one provider until a third can be found and Amerigroup Iowa's able to ramp up and accept more patients.

Earlier Monday, many news organizations quoted a website posting said the state was returning to state-run managed care. However, the new web post says that, with CMMS' blessing and the approval of UnitedHealthcare, they've avoided having to take on managed care again.

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