Florida Medicaid reform was introduced to improve the overall value of the Medicaid delivery system with the primary goal of adapting it to the needs of the local population. The existing system was costly, inefficient, and unable to meet the requirements of people living in the state (“Florida Medicaid Reform,” n.d.). For this reason, the rationale for this health reform was to provide more flexibility to clients, improve access to healthcare, reduce its costs, and ensure better coverage for individuals regardless of their location and financial status. The reform also aimed at better use of funding and their reduction to make the whole system more effective.
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Adoption of the Reform
The Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot was firstly introduced in 2005. The Florida Legislature passed Senate Bill 838 that provided an opportunity to set an experimental pilot related to section 1115 of the Social Security Act (SSA) with the primary goal to create a more effective care delivery system (“Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot,” n.d.). The draft waiver application was placed on Agency’s on the appropriate website on August 31, 2005 (“Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot,” n.d.). Later, Federal CMS reviewed the application and after some additional negotiations with the Florida Senate granted approval on October 19, 2005 (“Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot,” n.d.).
From January 2006 to June 2008, the Agency had several meetings related to the adoption of the reform in such counties as Broward, Duval, Baker, Clay, and Nassau (“Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot,” n.d.). As a result, innovation was accepted and used to introduce appropriate changes to the existing system. It was also extended in 2011 and 2014 with additional amendments to remain relevant and consider new conditions.
The pivotal aim of the reform was to introduce a scheme that uses existing costs more effectively. For this reason, there were no significant changes to the funding structure as it remains the issue controlled by the federal government. The overall spending for Medicaid in Florida constituted about $21.8 billion, which evidences is increase if to compare with fiscal years 2012 and 2016(“Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot,” n.d.). However, at the same time, the proposed reform had a positive impact on the effectiveness of funds’ distribution and their use to provide care to clients who previously did not have an opportunity to acquire the needed services.
The positive impacts of the discussed reform are obvious and can be evidenced by several facts. First, due to the implementation and extension of the given program, the expenditures in participating counties reduced about $200 per member per month for Medicaid enrollees, which can be considered a significant achievement of the given incentive as it helps economize costs and use them more effectively (Peace, 2014). Moreover, consumers acquired increased flexibility in specific disease management programs and preventive services that were needed for them, which is another essential goal of the reform (“Florida Medicaid Reform,” n.d.).
About 2,9 million Florida residents enrolled in the program to acquire benefits guaranteed by it and improve their access to the healthcare sector. Additionally, the Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot contributed to the increased competition among care providers and huge savings without any reduction in the quality of offerings (Peace, 2014). In such a way, the positive effects of the discussed legislation can be noted as people living in counties affected by it received new opportunities to get treatment and services that were previously unavailable to them. It evidences the relevance and the necessity of the proposed plan of action.
Florida Medicaid Reform. (n.d.). Web.
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Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot. (n.d.). Web.
Peace, J. (2014). Florida’s Medicaid reform pilot is saving money, UF study finds. UF Health. Web.