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Monday, October 19, 2015

Medicaid Congress Tackles Physicians’ Ire

Capturing the frustration of all the physicians in the room, San Antonio radiologist Adam Ratner, MD, asked a simple question with a very complicated answer at Friday’s Texas Medicaid Congress meeting. “Why can’t we just make this all simpler?” Dr. Ratner asked Texas Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Chris Traylor. “It’s like unraveling a bowl of spaghetti,” responded Traylor, whose administration of the $30 billion-a-year program is bound by federal and state laws and dozens of contracts with Medicaid HMOs. Despite the glutinous nature of the problems, members of the congress vowed to find ways to cut through the payment hassles, enrollment and credentialing morass, vexing drug formularies, and other obstructions that dissuade Texas physicians from participating in Medicaid. TMA Board of Trustees Chair Doug Curran, MD, and John Holcomb, MD, chair of TMA’s Select Committee on Medicaid, CHIP, and the Uninsured, led the meeting. The group will explore potential solutions in January at the 2016 TMA Winter Conference meeting of the Select Committee on Medicaid, CHIP, and the Uninsured.

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