HHS Announces Plans To Help Reduce Care Costs for Dual Eligibles
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on Friday unveiled two payment models to help states reduce costs and improve care for beneficiaries eligible for both Medicaid and Medicare, National Journal reports (McCarthy, National Journal, 7/8).
Sebelius said, "The only way to stabilize Medicaid costs without drastic cuts to eligibility, slashes to benefits or provider payments is finding ways to slow the growth in spending on patients with the most complex needs" (Clark, HealthLeaders Media, 7/11).
According to National Journal, the new payment models are intended to foster cooperation between states and federal officials on dual eligibles.
Under one of the new payment models, insurers, states and the federal government would each receive a set amount to cover the heath care for individual beneficiaries. A second solution would allow both states and the federal government to benefit from reducing costs and improving quality care through an agreement to share any savings generated when treating dual eligibles (National Journal, 7/8).
Sebelius also announced several other proposals intended to help states control health costs for dual eligibles. They include:
- A demonstration project that allows states to work with CMS and health insurers to provide coordinated care;
- A program that would aim to reduce hospital admissions from nursing homes; and
- A resource center to showcase best practices and provide technical assistance (HealthLeaders Media, 7/11).