2010 State Legislative Preview: RHODE ISLAND

In 2009, Ocean State lawmakers passed (H5112) Medicaid Reform. The bill helps RI with their Medicaid waiver. The waiver authorizes the implementation of the RI Global Consumer Choice Demonstration; creates the demonstration implementation taskforce. The bill became effective upon its passage on July 1, 2009 and is intended to lead to a narrowing of providers through selective contracting, suspension of participating providers, and ultimately a long-term care re-balancing system reform goals. The enabling legislation defines the intended outcomes of RI Medicaid Reform as resulting in: Beneficiaries being limited to using the services/products of only those providers determined in a competitive bidding process (selective contracting for Medicaid managed care). Also, Rhode Island’s Medicaid Managed Care Program, RIte Care provides families on the Family Independence Program and eligible uninsured pregnant women, parents, and children up to age 19 with comprehensive health coverage. Families receive most of their health care through one of three participating Health Plans: Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island, United Healthcare of New England and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of RI.                                                                                                     
HFA continues to profile each of the individual states and the current legislative environment looking ahead towards the 2010 legislative term. As always, community members are invited to comment, raise questions, address evolving themes. Your imput is always welcome.