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Highlights from Kaiser/HMA Study on Access to Reproductive Health for Low-Income Women

This week, our In Focus section reviews highlights and major findings from the study, Beyond the Numbers: Access to Reproductive Health Care for Low-Income Women in Five Communities, conducted by The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) and Health Management Associates (HMA). The report, published in November 2019, was prepared by Sharon Silow-Carroll, Carrie Rosenzweig, Diana Rodin, and Rebecca Kellenberg from Health Management Associates; and by Usha Ranji, Michelle Long, and Alina Salganicoff from KFF.

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Medication Assisted Treatment in Justice Settings

With funding from the California Health Care Foundation, Health Management Associates created the following video to capture the thoughts and feelings of various stakeholders in the criminal justice system about treating Opioid Use Disorder with Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT).  It includes comments from two clients who received MAT through the criminal justice system.  The parties interviewed are all involved in a project HMA is administering to coach teams from 29 counties to expand access to at least two forms of MAT in jails and drug courts.

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D-SNP 2021 Integration Requirements: Opportunities for Plans, States to Partner on Medicare-Medicaid Integration

This week, our In Focus section provides a high-level overview of the new Medicare Advantage Dual-Eligible Special Needs Plan (D-SNP) integration requirements in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) April 16, 2019, final rule[1] for calendar year (CY) 2021. CMS recently released two publications providing guidance and technical assistance to assist with the implementation of these new opportunities: the November 14, 2019, CMCS Informational Bulletin[2] and Integrated Care Resource Center technical assistance tool Sample Language for State Medicaid Agency Contracts with Dual Eligible Special Needs Plans.[3] Both identify steps to ensure that states’ Medicaid agency contracts (SMACs) with D-SNPs comply with the new 2021 requirements, and further encourage states and D-SNPs to work together to address the often fragmented care provided to the Medicare-Medicaid dually eligible population.

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NCQA’s Medicaid Health Insurance Plan Ratings 2019-20

This week, our In Focus section reviews the annual Medicaid health plan ratings released in September by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), which rated 171 Medicaid plans. For 2019-20, NCQA used a ratings methodology that scored each health plan from 0 to 5 in 0.5 increments – a system similar to the Five-Star Quality Rating System used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. A plan is considered top-rated if it scores a 4.5 or 5 and low-rated if it scores a 1 or 2. For 2019-20, only 15 Medicaid plans across the country were awarded a 4.5 or 5.

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