Governor Steve Bullock Wants to Expand Medicaid – Use Healthy Montana Kids Plan Model
This week, Governor Steve Bullock unveiled his Healthy Montana Plan of Medicaid expansion. House District 74 Representative Pat Noonan is one of two democrats on the House Health and Human Services Committee, he said the Healthy Montana Plan would use the private market to make Medicaid better.
"Under the Healthy Montana Plan, you get to use the private industry, but instead of actually paying just a straight premium for people who may not even be using the services, you use a third party administrator," Noonan said. "So you actually still negotiate services by a fee for service."
The Healthy Montana Plan uses the Healthy Montana Kids program which is already in operation as a model. Noonan said that if Montana puts the plan in place it will likely be the most highly regarded Medicaid expansion plan in the Nation.
"I think that this plan, personally, is probably one of the best plans put forward in the nation, really," Noonan said. "I think if we do this plan right, there won't be any states talking about doing the Arkansas model. They will be talk about doing the Montana model. But, I've also be around here long enough to know that there is no compromise without further negotiation. Nevertheless, I think this bill is really strong."
Noonan said he is ready to negotiate with republicans on the plan and that "No, is not an answer." The Healthy Montana plan will work its way through the legislature under the name House Bill 249.