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Senator Ragan: “Practical measures can improve Iowa Medicaid”

This news story was published on February 7, 2019.
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Amanda Ragan

The following is a legislative update from State Senator Amanda Ragan, representing Butler, Cerro Gordo, and Franklin counties:

Privatized, for-profit Medicaid continues to cause chaos and uncertainty for Iowa families, health care providers and taxpayers.

That’s why Sen. Mathis and I introduced a new bill that makes changes to privatized Medicaid on behalf of patients who need quality service and providers who want to get paid on time. Practical improvements in SF 156 include:

  • Returning health care for those with long-term needs to a state-run system.
  • Making it easier to get substance abuse treatment.
  • Making it easier for members to switch managed care organizations (MCOs.)
  • Ensuring Iowans have a stable, well-trained workforce.
  • Providing independent, conflict-free case management and assessments.
  • Implementing an external review process for providers.
  • Streamlining oversight through the State Ombudsman’s Office.

Three years ago, the Governor made a unilateral decision to privatize the health care of 600,000 Iowans. The for-profit corporations running Medicaid continue to deny services to disabled, elderly and vulnerable Iowans, and they don’t properly reimburse health care providers. In turn, health care providers refuse to see Medicaid patients. Some have even been forced to close up shop. All the while, taxpayers are handing over more of their hard-earned money for a system that is barely working.

MCOs are still reporting losses, and state savings are significantly lower than projected. At the same time, costs per Medicaid member have risen.

Since Governor Reynolds has confirmed her support for privatized Medicaid, it’s time for the legislation to move forward on serious meaningful improvements to the system.

“I visited with the Iowa Primary Care Association, which operates 84 community health centers across the state where Iowans of all backgrounds can access critical primary and preventive healthcare services. I am proud to have two delivery sites in my district – one in Clarksville and another newly-opened site in Mason City. This organization does important work and I will continue to support their mission in the legislature.”

“The Iowa Association of Realtors visited the Capitol on Wednesday. Here I am pictured with some of their North Iowa members and Rep. Sharon Steckman.”

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8 Responses to Senator Ragan: “Practical measures can improve Iowa Medicaid”

  1. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    February 11, 2019 at 6:14 pm

    She is absolutely right about those with long term health needs. The premise behind MCO savings is that they will help consumers become healthier and reduce the need for medical and other care. If someone has been disabled for 20 years or is 90 years old with heart disease, the only way MCOs save money is to withhold services and let them die faster.

    • Avatar

      Anonymous Reply Report comment

      February 11, 2019 at 10:58 pm

      That is exactly what should happen. Why spend money on people who are going to die anyway? same with those who have been disabled for 10+ years. Let them die. It is called culling the herd or draining the swamp. MAGA

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        February 12, 2019 at 6:31 am

        Wow. That is all I have. Just wow.

        But I bet you are opposed to abortion, right? You just don’t care about people once they are born.

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        February 12, 2019 at 8:14 am

        Yea kill’em all go Trump!

  2. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    February 11, 2019 at 1:53 pm

    Public servants (now there’s a joke here somewhere) DO !

  3. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    February 10, 2019 at 3:36 pm

    To nobody cares,
    You sound like a real first class citizen. If your don’t like our politicians then run for office!

  4. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    February 10, 2019 at 11:08 am

    Nobody cares about your old ass. Just stop.

    • Avatar

      anonymous Reply Report comment

      February 10, 2019 at 12:39 pm

      She has served 5 terms as our representative in the Senate so apparently, there are a number of people out there who do care.