Lynne Saxton Brings Compassion and Integrity to Oregon Health Authority

When Saxton made one of her first public appearances at Willamette University as the acting director of the Oregon Health Authority, she handed out a chart showing Oregon could save over $10 billion in Medicare expenditures over the next 10 years, but that was never the case. The chart should have said $10 billion in Medicaid savings over the next 10 year, and has since been corrected.

When Lynne Saxton accepted former Governor John Kitzhaber’s request to become the next administrator of the Oregon Health Authority, she realized the job would not come without its foibles.

CCO’s keep up their balancing act

Latest OHA report on key performance metrics says that growth in spending remains in check as Medicaid rolls climb to nearly 1 million across Oregon. Toughest problems still hard to change.

Oregon’s coordinated care organizations continue to manage a delicate balance: keeping costs down at the same time they are providing coverage to more and more Medicaid patients as a result of the Affordable Care Act.

Health Share Considers Early Prevention for ‘High Utilizers’

Survey finds that 66 percent suffered abuse as children, while 50 percent struggled in school.

Medicaid covers the cost of 51 percent of all the babies born in Oregon, according to Dr. David Labby, chief medical officer of Health Share of Oregon. “If you want to move upstream, start at the beginning.”

Oregon to Get Help from Kentucky on Enrollment Website for Medicaid

The Oregon state government has cut the rest of its losses with Oracle and decided to implement Kentucky’s system for Medicaid signups, after another stumble to salvage the $240 million spent on technology from Oracle.

Kentucky, long the butt of many a joke, was the surprising success story during the rollout of the Affordable Care Act.

State Punts Medicaid Enrollment to Federal Website with Cover Oregon

State Punts Federal Enrollment to Federal Website with Cover Oregon
State official Tina Edlund told legislators Monday that the state has given up trying to conduct most enrollments for the Oregon Health Plan itself. Like the private insurance consumers, low-income Oregonians will be directed to to get coverage. Cover Oregon Director Aaron Patnode also explained that a recent error means consumers with certain subsidized insurance plans will owe about $20 more than they were first told.

The state is backing away from any involvement with new Obamacare health enrollments come Nov.

Feds Back Down from Drastic Changes to CCO Formula

Coordinated care officials expressed confusion at the different instructions they were being given by federal health directors. Rep. Greenlick reiterated that he doesn’t believe the CCOs have reformed enough.

The feds backed down from their criticism of Oregon’s handling of the state Medicaid system, stepping away from a position that could have upended the whole transformation of the Oregon Health Plan into coordinated care organizations.

Medicaid Expansion Shifts Mission of Oregon’s Free Clinics

Some clinics have chosen to continue a focus on the uninsured -- and now serve mostly immigrants, shut out of Obamacare. Others now accept Medicaid, continuing the focus on their existing low-income patients now lucky to have coverage.

Obamacare has meant that the Oregon Health Plan, which had been limited to a lottery for low-income adults last year is now open to 365,000 people.

Cover Oregon Plots Future with Mind Toward Avoiding Risky Goals

Tina Edlund explained that a hybrid process will continue for Medicaid enrollments so that the state can be better assured of not promising more than it can deliver. Meanwhile, insurance agents, who account for 50% of all sign-ups, continue to struggle to get paid.

Cover Oregon is still having problems getting insurance agents the money they’ve earned, and the exchange has yet to collect a dime from the insurance companies that owe it an assessment on every policy sold.


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