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Brief

Medicaid Managed Care Response to COVID-19

This brief addresses how Medicaid Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) and states can individually and collectively play a role in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. MCOs and states are working together with all available resources to meet the emerging needs of the communities they serve. Congress is rapidly enacting changes to Medicaid to ensure that services related to COVID-19 are available through the program, and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is updating requirements and offering states, providers, and MCOs flexibilities.

While every stakeholder in the health care ecosystem – both public and private – has a critical role to play in meeting the needs of people in this country during this crisis, this paper focuses on the roles of MCOs and states during the COVID-19 response. Specifically, the focus is on examples of how MCOs and states can provide assistance through effective communications, improved access, data analysis and use of available financial levers. The range of options is vast and rapidly changing, and MCOs, like states, are of all different sizes and complexity– with that lens the paper focuses on options that would be available to most.

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