Children’s Health Coverage
Under managed care programs for publicly insured children, usage rates for prescription drugs and specialists and mental health care are reduced for children with chronic health conditions, a study in Medical Care and Research Review reports.
According to the study, service reductions stemming from managed care are more likely to affect children with chronic health conditions because such children generally use more health services. The reduction in services was not associated with any reported increase in unmet need, suggesting that they were appropriate changes, the authors found.
The researchers write that the findings are important to federal policymakers, who need to evaluate the effects of policies that give states significant freedom in designing and implementing managed care plans within Medicaid and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (Davidoff et al., Medical Care and Research Review, June 2008).