Iowa Medicaid privatization plan pits savings against services

Iowa's plan to privatize its $4 billion Medicaid program raises larger questions about whether steering beneficiaries to managed care companies is about improving their health or simply saving the state money, according to the Des Moines Register. State officials said the plan, set to go into effect next year, will save $51 million in the first six months alone; they added that 38 other states contract with managed care companies to run at least part of their Medicaid programs. However, service providers and patient advocates raised concerns that managed care contracts may provide an incentive to withhold necessary but costly services. Medicaid covers approximately 560,000 Iowans. Article