Newsroom > DHHS News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 22, 2015
DHHS Issues Medicaid Managed Care RFP to Integrate Services through Heritage Health
Includes Physical Health, Behavioral Health and Pharmacy Services
Lincoln – The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services’ Division of Medicaid and Long-Term Care (MLTC) has released the Request for Proposals (RFP) for the State’s new integrated Medicaid managed care program called Heritage Health. Heritage Health is a new health care delivery system that combines Nebraska’s current physical health, behavioral health, and pharmacy programs into a single comprehensive and coordinated system for Nebraska’s Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) enrollees. MLTC expects to award three contracts for the Heritage Health program in March 2016 with the program to begin operations on January 1, 2017.
“Nebraska has a proud heritage for taking care of ourselves, our families and our neighbors,” said Courtney Phillips, CEO of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services. “Heritage Health will be a vehicle for better health for nearly 230,000 Nebraskans, many of whom are among our most vulnerable.”
Heritage Health was developed using years of experience in operating managed care programs in Nebraska and researching the best practices of other states, with input from stakeholders and providers. It has been designed to simplify the delivery model for recipients by providing them with the opportunity to choose a health plan that will be responsible for an integrated package of health services and benefits.
“We are excited about all of the improvements and enhanced accountability that Heritage Health will bring to Nebraska Medicaid,” said Calder Lynch, Director of the Division of Medicaid and Long-Term Care. “Integration of behavioral and pharmacy services and inclusion of some of our highest need and highest cost populations will help us deliver better outcomes to recipients and greater value for taxpayers.”
Currently, Nebraska contracts with three health plans for physical health services like doctor visits and hospital care, a separate entity for behavioral health services, and a separate contractor to manage pharmacy services on behalf of the state. Under Heritage Health, Medicaid and CHIP enrollees will choose one health plan that will be responsible for this full array of services. There are approximately 230,000 Medicaid and CHIP enrollees who will be served by Heritage Health plans, including approximately 41,000 enrollees who have been previously excluded from the physical health managed care program and will now receive the benefits of coordinated care for their physical, behavioral, and pharmacy services.
“There is no health without behavioral health. Individuals with mental illness die 25 years younger than the general population,” said Sheri Dawson, Director of the DHHS Division of Behavioral Health. “Recognizing the importance of treating the whole person in an integrated setting is an important first step.”
Procurement activities begin with the release of the RFP and will include at least one pre-proposal conference and two rounds of written questions and answers. Proposals will be due to the Division of Administrative Services (DAS) by December 22, 2015. Evaluation will begin after the first of the year. DHHS expects to award contracts in March.
More detailed information regarding Heritage Health can be found in the attached fact sheet. For more information about the Heritage Health program including answers to common questions and a timeline for implementation, please visit http://dhhs.ne.gov/heritagehealth
Note: Additional details about Heritage Health are linked below.