MedStar's Response to the District's Medicaid Contract Decision | MedStar Health

MedStar's Response to the District's Medicaid Contract Decision

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Regarding Managed Care Contract Awards by the District of Columbia

MedStar Health is deeply committed to serving the 58,000 men, women and children in the District of Columbia who rely on MedStar Family Choice for vital healthcare services through Medicaid. We are extremely disappointed and puzzled by the decision announced by the Department of Health Care Finance to exclude us from the managed care contract award after five years of service to District residents. Such a change is especially risky at a time of uncertainty over funding and access to safety net programs nationwide.

It is hard to understand why the District would turn away from a health plan with a proven record in the District of reliable, high quality performance that is highly accountable and responsive to the needs of the community. Locally owned and controlled, we are already woven into the fabric of the District’s safety net community.

Over the past five years, MedStar Family Choice has become the health plan of choice for Medicaid services in the District by providing broad access to high quality care, earning patients’ trust, and holding down costs. Enrollment in our programs has grown dramatically, especially when compared to the other two Medicaid health plans. Under the proposed change, not only will tens of thousands of District residents be required to switch insurers, many could lose access to their current physicians.

As the largest not-for-profit health system in the region, MedStar Health’s hospitals and physicians provide care to more than 35 percent of the District’s residents. MedStar has been serving patients in the District for more than 100 years, and we understand our patients’ needs. We are committed to continuing our role for years to come. Therefore, we are seeking further information about this decision and are formulating our next steps in response.

Contact: Ann C. Nickels,, 410-772-6661; 410-409-6399 (cell)