For Immediate Release: 07/14/2011
Contact: Doug Porter, Director, Health Care Authority, 360-725-1040; Heidi Robbins Brown, Deputy Director, Health Care Authority 360-725-1040; Preston Cody, Director, Division of Healthcare Services, Health Care Authority 360-725-1786
OLYMPIA – The Washington State Health Care Authority has reset the probable release date for a 2012 contract that will combine the Medicaid managed care program called Healthy Options with the state's Basic Health Plan, which provides coverage for the working poor.
The Health Care Authority originally planned to distribute the Request for Proposals to possible bidders as early as July 2011. However, Health Care Authority Director Doug Porter said today that the analysis and review would take longer and that the release date would be extended to as late as September 15, 2011.
"We had built extra time into the planning process so we are still on track to meet the intended coverage start date of July 1, 2012," Porter said.
The joint procurement project is one of a number of innovative Health Care Authority initiatives aimed at improving care, expanding service delivery options and implementing payment reform and quality control features. The procurement also is investigating the possibility of including populations like aged, blind or disabled clients who have not been covered by managed care before.
"It's important to take the time necessary to respond to stakeholder feedback and publish a high quality request for proposal," Porter said.
Porter said the extra time would allow the planning team to:
- Finalize rates
- Complete the actuarial analysis
- Resolve any unanticipated fiscal impacts
- Complete the review and analysis of stakeholder comments and suggestions
- Complete the integration of requirements passed in the last legislative session (SSB5394 and ESSB5927)
Porter said the contract -- which was released in draft form for stakeholder review earlier this year -- attracted a great deal of interest and that the feedback from interested stakeholders has been extremely helpful.
"I think you’ll see many ideas reflected in the final release of the Request for Proposals," he said.
The Health Care Authority does not discriminate and provides equal access to its programs and services for all persons without regard to race, color, gender, religion, creed, marital status, national origin, sexual orientation, age, veteran's status or the presence of any physical, sensory or mental disability.
FOR ADDITIONAL BACKGROUND, CONTACT:
Jim Stevenson, Communications, 360-725-1915 email@example.com (Pager: 360-971-4067)
The procurement draft is available on the Health Care Authority Internet at: www.hca.wa.gov/documents/joint_procurement_rfp_draft.pdf