Commonwealth Fund July 30, 2020
Sara Rosenbaum, Maria Velasquez, Alexander Somodevilla, Elizabeth Gray, Rebecca Morris, Morgan Handley, J. Zoë Beckerman


Medicaid managed care can be a useful tool for states seeking to improve primary health care for people with low incomes

There are some similarities, but also significant differences, in how state Medicaid programs approach primary care purchasing


  • Issue: Federal regulations set broad standards for what state Medicaid managed care contracts must address. But these contracts can vary enormously both in their details and in the degree to which the purchaser sets specific expectations versus broader aims.
  • Goal: To identify and compare the primary care–related elements of state Medicaid managed care contracts.
  • Methods: Review of written purchasing specifications contained in contract documents covering the low-income population that are used by 39 states and the District of Columbia, as...