Conflict of interest claims dismissed in contested North Carolina Medicaid decision

A North Carolina judge dismissed claims filed by health insurers who lost their bids to manage the state's Medicaid program, according to local news station WRAL.

The losing health insurers, including Aetna Better Health, Optima Family Care and My Health by Health Providers, claimed that Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina improperly received a large portion of the contract. Specifically, the health plans alleged there was a conflict of interest between a state employee working on the contract and a Blue Cross executive.

However, North Carolina Judge Tenisha Jacobs determined that the contract was properly awarded. She dismissed the lawsuit, according to WRAL. The three health insurers that filed the lawsuit have appealed the case to the Superior Court. 

The state Department of Health and Human Services' contract, which is valued at $6 billion a year, will be managed by five health plans. The transition to a managed Medicaid system is slated to start in July 2021.

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