Georgia's Department of Community Health has accepted the Medicaid managed-care bids of four insurers, three of whom had already run the state's Medicaid program.
For the past several years, Georgia has contracted with Anthem, Centene Corp. and WellCare Health Plans to manage the care of its low-income population. Georgia awarded a contract to each of those for-profit insurers as well as a new bidder, CareSource, a not-for-profit plan headquartered in Dayton, Ohio. Anthem will also continue to manage the Georgia Families 360 program, which covers children and young adults who are in foster care, adoption assistance or jail.
Georgia's new Medicaid managed-care contracts will go into effect July 2016 and still must be finalized. The four companies will cover about 1.5 million poor Georgians, and combined premium revenue exceeds $3 billion. The state has high rates of poverty and several counties with poor health outcomes. Some experts have questioned whether the widespread shift to Medicaid managed care is truly benefiting the low-income beneficiaries. —Bob Herman