Federal officials have given the OK to take statewide a plan to use managed care in the Medicaid program. Here is the official statement from the Governor's office:
Governor Rick Scott today announced that after months of negotiations with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Florida has won its request for a waiver granting additional flexibilities in Medicaid to better coordinate care and help prevent hospital visits.
HHS's agreement to give Florida a medical assistance waiver in the Statewide Medicaid Managed Care Program comes just weeks after HHS granted the Governor's first waiver request in the state's long-term care program.
Gov. Rick Scott said, "This is a great win for Florida, and it would not have been possible without the support of legislators who began the fight for this Medicaid flexibility many months ago. Improving the coordination of care in Medicaid means we will be able to better-manage chronic conditions and give more preventative treatments to help keep Florida families healthy. When I met with Sec. Sebelius in Washington, D.C. in January, I stressed the importance of the state receiving flexibilities in our current Medicaid program through the long-term care waiver and this medical assistance waiver for the implementation of the Statewide Medicaid Managed Care Program. Getting this waiver approved by HHS, just after our long-term care waiver, makes us two-for-two in our request for Medicaid flexibilities. This helps Florida taxpayers by lowering costs and Florida families by improving healthcare services."
HHS communicated the state's Medicaid Managed Care medical assistance waiver approval in a letter expressing the department's "agreement in principle" to the Agency for Health Care Administration earlier today.