CHAPTER 9. HUMAN SERVICES.

§9-5-27. Transitioning foster care into managed care.

(a) "Eligible services" means acute care, including medical, pharmacy, dental, and behavioral health services.

(b) The secretary shall transition to a capitated Medicaid program for a child classified as a foster child and a child placed in foster care under Title IV-E of the Social Security Act who is living in the state by January 1, 2020. The program shall be statewide, fully integrated, and risk based; shall integrate Medicaid-reimbursed eligible services; and shall align incentives to ensure the appropriate care is delivered in the most appropriate place and time.

(c) The secretary shall make payments for the eligible services, including home and community-based services, using a managed care model.

(d) The secretary shall submit, if necessary, applications to the United States Department of Health and Human Services for waivers of federal Medicaid requirements that would otherwise be violated in the implementation of the program, and shall consolidate any additional waivers where appropriate: Provided, That this subsection does not apply to the Aged and Disabled Waiver, the Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities Waiver, and the Traumatic Brain Injury Waiver.

(e) If a selected managed care organization ceases to contract with the Department of Health and Human Services to provide Medicaid managed care services, it must provide all patient records, including medical records, to the next selected managed care organization to ensure the Eligible Medicaid Beneficiaries do not experience an interruption in care.

(f) In designing the program, the secretary shall ensure that the program:

(1) Reduces fragmentation and offers a seamless approach to meeting participants" needs;

(2) Delivers needed supports and services in the most integrated, appropriate, and cost-effective way possible;

(3) Offers a continuum of acute care services, which includes an array of home and community-based options;

(4) Includes a comprehensive quality approach across the entire continuum of care services; and

(5) Consult stakeholders in the program development process, and the managed care organization that is awarded the contract shall create a voluntary advisory group of foster, adoptive, and kinship parents, which shall meet every quarter for the first year following the effective date of the changes made to this section during the 2019 Regular Session of the Legislature and then every six months thereafter, to discuss issues they are encountering with the managed care organization and recommend solutions. The managed care organization shall report on the recommendations of the advisory group and address how and why procedures have or have not changed based on those recommendations. This report shall be submitted to the secretary and the Legislative Oversight Commission on Health and Human Resources Accountability as set forth in §16-29E-1 et seq. of this code, and the public in a timely fashion and shall be available on the managed care organization"s webpage.

(g) The department shall evaluate the transition to managed care and shall collect and annually report on the following items: the number of claims submitted, the number of claims approved, the number of claims denied, the number of claims appealed, the resolution of appealed claims, the average time of an appeal, the average length of stay in a child residential care center, and health outcomes. The initial report will be filed by July 1, 2021, with the Legislative Oversight Commission on Health and Human Resources Accountability and the Foster Care Ombudsman with a final report submitted July 1, 2023.

(h) The transition of foster care to managed care shall terminate on June 30, 2024, unless cancelled by the secretary at an earlier date.

(i) (1) The Office of the Inspector General shall employ an independent foster care ombudsman, with experience as a former foster parent or experience in the area of child welfare;

(2) The duties of the ombudsman shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

(A) Advocating for the rights of foster children and foster parents;

(B) Participating in any procedure to investigate, and resolve complaints filed on behalf of a foster child or foster parent, relating to action, inaction or decisions of providers of managed care services, or the representatives of such providers, of public agencies, or of social service agencies, which may adversely affect the health, safety, welfare and rights of the foster child or foster parent;

(C) Monitoring the development and implementation of federal, state and local legislation, regulations and policies with respect to foster care services; and

(D) Establishing and maintaining a statewide uniform reporting system to collect and analyze data relating to complaints for the purpose of identifying and resolving significant problems faced by foster children and foster parents as a class. The data shall be submitted to the Bureau of Children and Families within the Department of Health and Human Resources and the Legislative Oversight Commission on Health and Human Resources Accountability on a quarterly basis;

(3) The ombudsman shall participate in ongoing training programs related to his or her duties or responsibilities.

(j) An employee of the department who, as a function of that employment, has engaged in the development of any contract developed pursuant to the requirements of this section may not for a period of two years thereafter be employed by any agency or company that has benefitted or stands to benefit directly from a contract between the department and that agency or company.

(k) Any managed care company selected as the managed care contractor pursuant to the provisions of this article shall have at least 80 percent of the total full-time equivalent positions allocated to manage care of foster children in West Virginia according to the contract must have a primary work place in the state of West Virginia.