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New managed care contracts will serve 600,000

Competitive process included collaboration with counties

10/5/2022 2:00:00 PM

On Wednesday, the Minnesota Department of Human Services finalized managed care contracts for families and children in 80 Greater Minnesota counties and for older adults and adults with disabilities statewide. 

The new contracts for public health care programs will serve approximately 600,000 Minnesotans, beginning Jan. 1, 2023. 

The following managed care plans will have contracts in at least one county: Blue Plus, HealthPartners, Hennepin Health, Itasca Medical Care, Medica, PrimeWest Health, South Country Health Alliance, UCare and United Healthcare Community Plan of Minnesota. 

“Hundreds of thousands of Minnesotans will receive quality health care because we all focused on achieving results for all enrollees,” said Human Services Commissioner Jodi Harpstead. “These contracts are expanded to improve timely, equitable access to care. We look forward to working with the health plans to drive toward greater outcomes on behalf of the people we support.” 

The contract awards cap a robust 2-1/2-year collaboration with counties to design and implement a competitive procurement process that gave most of the weight of the scoring to the counties, while meeting state and federal law. 

During the procurement process, counties and DHS collectively determined the questions for the requests for proposals, the point total for each question and the criteria for each response. DHS and the counties then scored the responses together. DHS and the counties prioritized scoring for commitments to addressing equity, eliminating disparities in health outcomes and responding to the needs of rural Minnesotans. Health plans responded to questions on these topics in the requests for proposals. The contracts also add accountability measures for health outcomes. 

No enrollees will lose coverage, covered services or access to their prescription drugs due to these contract changes. The majority of enrollees will have choices in their health plan options. 

The contracts awarded for families and children cover 80 Greater Minnesota counties for the prepaid Medical Assistance and MinnesotaCare programs. Last year, DHS awarded contracts to serve families and children in the seven metro-area counties.

The contracts for older adults and adults with disabilities will take effect statewide for the Minnesota Senior Health Options, Minnesota Senior Care Plus and Special Needs BasicCare programs. 

For older Minnesotans and adults with disabilities, DHS prioritized stability and continuity of care by ensuring that these enrollees could keep their current health plans. The majority of enrollees have multiple chronic conditions. Most also have Medicare coverage, which for some is integrated with their Medicaid coverage under one health plan. Minnesota is a leader in integrating coverage for people dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, resulting in improved health outcomes.

Managed care contracts account for approximately $8.7 billion in annual spending and cover 1.3 million Minnesotans. Find more information on the procurement process, including the requests for proposals, at mn.gov/dhs/mcoinfo under “Procurement.”

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