Archive for Monday, April 2, 2012

Statehouse Live: Democrats say ‘carve out’ issue on developmentally disabled and KanCare won’t go away

April 2, 2012, 11:04 a.m. Updated April 2, 2012, 1:44 p.m.

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— Democratic legislative leaders said Monday they still believe there is a chance to maintain the current system of assistance for people with developmental disabilities and prevent it from becoming part of Gov. Sam Brownback’s plan to contract with insurance companies to manage Medicaid.

“The carve-out issue is not going away,” said Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley, D-Topeka.

“Carve-out” refers to efforts by advocates for people with developmental disabilities to be removed from the Medicaid privatization plan, which would be called KanCare.

Brownback wants to contract with private insurance companies to handle the state’s $2.9 billion Medicaid program that covers health care for the poor, elderly and disabled.

Last week, Rep. Jim Ward, D-Wichita, tried to take a bill forming a KanCare legislative oversight committee and make an amendment to remove people with developmental disabilities from KanCare and maintain their current network.

Advocates of people with developmental disabilities have pleaded with Brownback to leave them alone, saying that their needs don’t fit the managed care system proposed under KanCare.

But Brownback, a Republican, has rejected those pleas and promised that services will improve under KanCare and cost less.

A bi-partisan group of legislators spoke in support of Ward’s amendment. But Brownback’s allies in the House managed to have the entire bill sent back to committee before a vote could be taken on Ward’s amendment.

The procedural move, however, won’t make the issue disappear, Democrats said.

“I still think there is a majority in the House to carve out the developmentally disabled portion of KanCare,” said House Minority Leader Paul Davis, D-Lawrence. “There is broad support for doing that across the political spectrum,” he said.

Davis said Brownback administration officials worked on House members to stop Ward’s amendment. He said many of those officials were at another meeting related to KanCare and got messages to quickly get to the House.

The bill was sent back to committee on a 69-54 vote with only Republicans voting to send it back. But Davis said he thought some Republicans who supported Ward’s amendment also voted to send it back to committee to align with GOP leaders on a procedural move.

The Legislature convenes its wrap-up session on April 25 with numerous big issues still unresolved, including the budget, proposed tax cuts, redistricting and school finance.

Hensley said the opportunity for another debate on removing people with developmental disabilities from KanCare will arise again because many legislators are intent on approving the bill that sets up the oversight committee.

Comments

BigDog 3 years, 3 months ago

The carve out better pass by a large margin if it comes up for another vote because likely will be vetoed by Governor if wins on a close vote. Doubt it will be possible to get a 2/3 majority to overturn the veto.

Christine Anderson 3 years, 3 months ago

I absolutely have to go with the Dems on this one.

Kendall Simmons 3 years, 3 months ago

I don't understand why the Governor still can't grasp that services for people with developmental disabilities isn't a "health" care issue.

Of course, he also thinks that turning Medicaid over to for-profit businesses is going to be "cheaper" and "save money".

BigDog 3 years, 3 months ago

So since.most people ignored Scott Rothchild's article from yesterday .... it becomes a headline story online today?

Way to go LJ World .... maybe next headline can be something written by staff at another paper like Topeka from Sunday.

chootspa 3 years, 3 months ago

I'd rather we take them all out, but this isn't a biased request.

With DD, the necessary services are long term and chronic, and not all of them are medical. Someone with DD could need a high level of support for 70 years. Unlike other patients, they don't recover, and their condition isn't fatal.

chootspa 3 years, 3 months ago

Kansas should do a better job keeping citizens in the community, whether it's from age or DD. I totally agree. In fact, they may be facing Olmstead action in the future for their inability to do so.

However, the prognosis and length of care is markedly different in the two populations. An elderly person wouldn't need job supports to remain in the community, for instance.

jafs 3 years, 3 months ago

There are certainly some similarities between the aging population and the dd one, but also some differences.

Richard Heckler 3 years, 3 months ago

Is Gov Sam Brownback a shareholder in the medical insurance industry?

Tax dollars would be spent on: Golden Parachutes exist Obscene CEO and BOD pay packages exist Shareholders exist the monster bureaucracy that over 2,000 insurance providers create exists * the cost of 6 lobbyists per elected official exists

  • corrupt political campaign spending against insurance reform exists such as: Former aides and elected officials spending $1.4 million a day fighting reform.

For example: A. http://voices.washingtonpost.com/health-care-reform/2009/07/health_care_continues_its_inte.html B. http://www.campaignmoney.org/HMO_insurance_spend_to_kill_reform C. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/07/05/AR2009070502770.html

Healthcare Reform Report Card Let's Compare: Single-Payer (HR 676 and S 703) Expanded Medicare for All Vs. Proposed Healthcare “Private insurance with Public Option” http://www.healthcare-now.org/docs/spreport.pdf

Mike Ford 3 years, 3 months ago

gop plan....punish those who can't fight back......

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