Kansas Medicaid provider working to fix payment problems

Capitol Bureau

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – Aetna’s recent problems were front and center Tuesday at the KanCare Oversight Joint Committee meeting.

Aetna became a Kansas Medicaid provider at the beginning of the year and has since been under fire for many issues, including delayed payments to healthcare providers.

“We haven’t met the expectations I have for our plan, and we certainly haven’t met your expectations either,” said Randy Hyun CEO, Aetna Medicaid.

“I do want to acknowledge that and apologize because that’s happened under my watch, and I’m accountable for it,” Hyun said. “I’m also accountable more importantly for fixing it.”

Aetna is beginning to make changes to resolve these problems, including the management team for Kansas as well as bringing in new resources from Aetna branches nationwide, according to Hyun.

Health officials in the state are hoping the problems they’re seeing start to decline with time.

“We are cautiously optimistic, we’ve had a lot of conversations with their new leadership team and they’ve reaffirmed their commitment to Kansas in making sure that they get themselves back to where they need to be,” said Adam Proffitt, state Medicaid director.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is currently reviewing a new plan from Aetna that is aimed at correcting problems they have seen.

“We’re going to make sure that we feel confident that they’ll be able to work themselves back into compliance and deliver the quality care that we expect them to,” said Proffitt.

Committee members held a two-day meeting discussing multiple issues regarding KanCare, the state’s Medicaid system. For many, the problems with Aetna have been a big focus.

“They are working through those and timelines in place to make that move forward, I am confident that KDHE and KDADS (Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services) will be sure that we have good appropriate providers for our MCO’s (Managed Care Organization) and if not, we’ll change,” said Mission Hills Senator Barbara Bollier.

KDHE said there is no time table on when it will decide if Aetna’s corrective plan is acceptable.

Representatives from the other Medicaid contractors, United Healthcare and Sunflower, presented to the committee on Tuesday as well.

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