Arkansas Healthcare

Arkansas House Speaker Jeremy Gillam during the April 2016 special session on Medicaid expansion.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

Arkansas House leaders say a host of state programs including public schools, prisons and colleges would face cuts if lawmakers don't fund the state's hybrid Medicaid expansion.

Arkansas House Speaker Jeremy Gillam on Monday released an alternate budget detailing the cuts needed if legislation funding the expanded coverage isn't approved. The Legislature last week approved Gov. Asa Hutchinson's plan to keep and rework the expansion, which uses federal funds to purchase private insurance for the poor.

Gov. Radio Column: Passage of Ark. Works

Apr 9, 2016
Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R)
Governor's Office

The following is a transcript of Gov. Asa Hutchinson's radio column for the weekend of April 8, 2016:

  This is Governor Asa Hutchinson…

There was one key bill on the agenda of the three-day extraordinary session of the General Assembly: Arkansas Works. Arkansas Works provides greater emphasis on work opportunities, requires a personal investment in healthcare, increases usage of employer-based insurance and implements cost-saving measures.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Arkansas Works Healthcare
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Gov. Asa Hutchinson has signed into law his plan to keep and rework the state's hybrid Medicaid expansion, as he now faces a fight from fellow Republicans who want to block the program's funding.

On Friday he signed into law two bills outlining his proposed changes to the program, which uses federal funds to purchase private insurance for more than 250,000 low-income residents. The program was created three years ago as an alternative to expanding Medicaid under the federal health law.

Charlie Collins
Brian Chilson / Arkansas Times

Arkansas legislators have given initial approval to Gov. Asa Hutchinson's plan to continue a modified form of the state's Medicaid expansion, but the margins suggest it will be an uphill battle to approve funding.

Arkansas House of Representatives.

Arkansas lawmakers are taking up Gov. Asa Hutchinson's plan to keep and rework the state's hybrid Medicaid expansion.

Health Care Execs Discuss Challenges Amid Changing Laws, Demographics

Apr 6, 2016

Healthcare is changing as hospitals modify services away from fee-based compensation to an outcome-based system in compliance with the Affordable Care Act. That, and workforce shortages, were among the challenges discussed Wednesday at the Northwest Arkansas Council’s Health Care Summit in Rogers.

Changing the entire mindset of the health care sector and the patients it serves is taking place in accordance with the Affordable Health Care Act, said Dr. Bill Bradley, president and CEO of Washington Regional Medical System.

Arkansas Legislature Begins Special Session To Consider Healthcare

Apr 6, 2016
Governor Asa Hutchinson legislature

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson is calling the debate over the future of the hybrid Medicaid expansion a "watershed" moment for the state. He compared the special session convened on his proposal to keep and rework the expansion to past sessions on major issues such as the state's school funding system.

Hours after Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced the Legislature would consider only his Arkansas Works legislation in a special session that begins Wednesday, legislators publicly released a bill they say will help the state’s Medicaid system save more than a billion dollars over five years.

The 30-page bill would create DiamondCare, which would use private administrative services organizations that would contract with the Department of Human Services to manage some Medicaid services, rather than those services being managed entirely by DHS.

Democratic Party of Arkansas Chair Vincent Insalaco in his office in Little Rock.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

With the special session on Medicaid expansion all but upon us Democrats are continuing to show signs that their support is not to be taken for granted by the Republican governor. Democratic Party of Arkansas Chair Vincent Insalaco released a statement today making the case for Democratic leverage.

Herb Sanderson AARP
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Gov. Asa Hutchinson will limit the call in the upcoming special legislative session to his continuation of the private option, which he is calling Arkansas Works, and will not ask legislators to consider his managed care savings plan.

Hutchinson announced his intentions during a press conference at the Capitol Tuesday, the day after Senate President Pro Tempore Jonathan Dismang, R-Beebe; and Speaker of the House Jeremy Gillam, R-Judsonia, informed him in letters that a majority consensus exists with Arkansas Works but not with his managed care program.