Arc and Governor Quinn Releases $5.2 Billion Medicaid Restructure Plan
Earlier this week, I shared with you another draft of the 1115 Waiver for public comment.
New information included in this draft 1115 Waiver is a breakdown of the $5.2 billion that
is being requested from Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) to fund this Medicaid
Transformation in Illinois. This is the first time we have seen the figures. Remember this
will be a negotiation between the State and CMS, so these figures are the starting point
for that negotiation. The figures could change depending upon that negotiation.
Please note: There will be a conference line option available for this hearing. Call-in
information will be emailed to all registrants ahead of the meeting.
From today’s Chicago Tribune
Quinn releases $5.2B Medicaid restructure plan
By Peter Frost and Monique Garcia Tribune reporters
In a bid to secure up to $5.2 billion in federal money to help bolster the state’s cash-
strapped Medicaid program, Gov. Pat Quinn on Wednesday released a five-year
restructuring plan that aims to position the program for long-term savings.
The proposal, dubbed “The Path to Transformation,” seeks to expand services like
mental health and addiction treatment, create and expand home- and community-
based care for the disabled and consolidate nine programs that serve different
categories of patients.
To access the federal funding, regulators must approve a waiver, which the state
plans to submit next month after holding two public hearings.
“This plan will help take our health care system to the next level — improving the
health of people and communities across Illinois while significantly lowering our long-
term costs,” Quinn said in a statement.
A spokesman for Quinn said the changes hinge on investing more money upfront to
move people out of residential treatment centers and into community-based care
settings. The hope is that the state and federal government will ultimately save money.
That’s also what the Quinn administration will have to prove to the federal
government in order to get approval.
“By restructuring and streamlining, we can bend the cost curve and spend less in
the long run on community care while also provide better treatment for folks across the
board,” said spokesman Mike Claffey. “Ours is a very ambitious plan, but we think we
can do a better job by reforming and restructuring the system.”
Illinois has submitted a concept paper detailing its plan to the federal Centers for
Medicare and Medicaid Services for review. A spokeswoman for the centers declined
The proposal builds on a program Quinn already put in place to move patients in
state-run institutions for the developmentally disabled into more individualized small-
Supporters contend that smaller settings offer more personalized care, while
opponents contend that some are better served in institutionalized settings with highly
Including the federal money and revenue from health care providers, the total
investment is expected to be about $6 billion.
While Quinn is pushing the new five-year plan, there are no guarantees he’ll be in
office to see it through.
The Democrat is seeking re-election to a second term and is trying to broadcast his
priorities as the four Republican hopefuls snipe at one another heading into the March
The federal government typically considers granting waivers in situations where it
believes the state can save taxpayer money by implementing experimental, pilot or
Under the law, such programs must be budget-neutral, meaning that any money the
federal government spends under the waiver must not exceed what it would have
The plan has the support of a number of advocacy groups and the powerful Illinois
It’s unclear when Quinn’s proposal would take effect; Medicaid overhauls in other
states have taken a year or longer to gain approval.
Tony Paulauski Executive Director
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423