Protests could stall Louisiana Medicaid contract negotiation

Louisiana
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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – Louisiana’s health department wants to continue negotiating terms with four companies chosen to manage Medicaid patient care, despite an ongoing challenge to the contract awards.

Health Secretary Rebekah Gee filed the request Monday with Louisiana’s chief procurement officer Paula Tregre. Tregre is reviewing the contract awards to determine if state law was properly followed.

The two losing bidders for the multibillion-dollar work are formally protesting the awards, accusing the health department of a biased bid review tainted by conflicts of interest. They want Tregre to keep the health department from moving ahead with new contracts.

Gee wrote that delays in contract negotiations could “disrupt and jeopardize” health care services to Medicaid patients.

The companies will oversee care for 90% of Louisiana’s Medicaid enrollees, about 1.5 million people, starting in January.

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