3 HHS Programs Aim to Reduce States’ Dual Eligible Costs

Saying this is “a big breakthrough day,” Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius on Friday announced three efforts she says will help states lower their share of costs for approximately nine million people who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid benefits. These so-called “dual eligibles “make up just 15% of Medicaid beneficiaries but account for almost 40% of the (Medicaid) cost, even though Medicare also pays for part of the care” because these people have significant health needs, Sebelius said. Also, she says, the fact that they must navigate between two separate programs “can make it more likely that they receive fragmented, inefficient, or duplicative care.”

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