Medicaid Managed Care Plans and Access to Care: Results from the Kaiser Family Foundation 2017 Survey of Medicaid Managed Care Plans
Managed care organizations (MCOs) cover nearly two-thirds of all Medicaid beneficiaries nationwide, making managed care the nation’s dominant delivery system for Medicaid enrollees. As the entities responsible for providing comprehensive Medicaid benefits to enrollees by contracting with providers, managed care plans play a critical role in shaping access to care for Medicaid enrollees. Many plan actions are dictated by state policy or contracting requirements; however, plans also have some flexibility to design payment and delivery systems and structure enrollees’ experiences using their coverage. To understand how Medicaid managed care plans approach access to care and the challenges they face in ensuring such access, the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a survey of plans in 2017.