New Class: Future of Medicaid in North Carolina: Charge & Questions

I am very excited to be teaching a new Masters of Public Policy course this Fall at Duke University on The Future of Medicaid in North Carolina. The 14 students all have background in health policy, including prior job, coursework and recently completed internships.

The charge to this class is going to begin with the charge that the recently passed North Carolina budget gives to a new Medicaid Reform Advisory Group ( p. 161-62):

SECTION 12H.1.(a) The Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Medical Assistance, (Department), in consultation with the Medicaid Reform Advisory Group created by subsection (e) of this section, shall create a detailed plan for, but not implement, significant reforms to the State’s Medicaid Program that shall accomplish the following:

  • Create a predictable and sustainable Medicaid program for North Carolina taxpayers.
  • Increase administrative ease and efficiency for North Carolina Medicaid providers.
  • Provide care for the whole person by uniting physical and behavioral health care.

The class is going to function as an alternative, Medicaid Reform Advisory Group.

The first order of business when we meet for this first time tomorrow night is to decide if there are any other goals/charges that should be added to the work of the group?

I will be suggesting one more:  identify a means of providing a straightforward means of paying for health care for as many North Carolinians as possible.

Below is a link to a series of questions that I have posed to the group to help them organize themselves into functioning units. This is important work, and it should be fun as well. If you have additional questions they should address, post them in the comments.

Medicaid Practicum Course.Topics.8.26.13

cross posted at freeforall

Author: Don Taylor

Don Taylor is an Associate Professor of Public Policy at Duke University, where his teaching and research focuses on health policy, with a focus on Medicare generally, and on hospice and palliative care, specifically. He increasingly works at the intersection of health policy and the federal budget. Past research topics have included health workforce and the economics of smoking. He began blogging in June 2009 and wrote columns on health reform for the Raleigh, (N.C.) News and Observer. He blogged at The Incidental Economist from March 2011 to March 2012. He is the author of a book, Balancing the Budget is a Progressive Priority that will be published by Springer in May 2012.

8 thoughts on “New Class: Future of Medicaid in North Carolina: Charge & Questions”

  1. North Carolina is not doing the ACA Medicaid expansion, right? Nevertheless, you might look at ways to deal with the people, who I guess will be women and their children, who are just on the very edge of eligibility for the ACA subsidies. Some of them will be bouncing between eligibility for subsidized insurance and eligibility for Medicaid. You might look at smoothing that transition.

    Oh, and here’s a straightforward means of paying for health care for a whole lot of North Carolinians: USE THE MONEY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT WILL GIVE YOU FOR MEDICAID EXPANSION. Oops, sorry for shouting, particularly here where probably the majority of readers think that the North Carolina government is making a mistake not expanding Medicaid.

    1. N.C. not expanding, though there are many that think we will do so after the Republican primary for Senate in May 2014; the next session of the N.C. General Assembly convenes the monday after the primary. I agree that no matter what the long term future looks like, the obvious next step is the Medicaid expansion.

      1. Forgot to say, I wish I could take that class. It sounds great. Will you be putting some of the class’s work up here so we can all look at it?

  2. Wish I could take this class Don. You might also look at, if you time, how will Medicaid promote quality of care versus simply increase quantity received.

  3. Is your additional objective shared in any way by NC policymakers? Their first stated one I interpret as ¨do it as cheap as possible¨, the second ¨but not at the expense of inconveniencing our friends the hospital chains¨, the third ¨don´t forget to lecture the poor to stop eating grease and take some exercise¨. Your students will be geniuses if they can generate proposals that would make real progress in health care within hard conservative constraints.

    1. James: I don’t think the students will feel constrained. Many of them did internships this summer in N.C. or DC focused on health reform, so their eyes are wide open, though.

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