Lee Partridge, Consultant
This National Health Policy Forum meeting report reviews a technical session that took place on August 4, 2006. The invitation-only meeting was designed to discuss implementation issues related to the new Medicare drug benefit, with special consideration of state activities, problems, and concerns. This meeting followed similar ones sponsored by the Forum in 2004 and 2005 in which the state perspective was the primary focus of conversation. Participants, including current and former state Medicaid directors, other state officials and experts, federal officials, Medicare drug plan representatives, and beneficiary advocates, described their experiences during the implementation process and addressed continuing challenges. Key topics discussed and summarized in this report include better use and sharing of data and information technology, financial effects of the Medicare drug benefit on states, new roles for plans and states, and opportunities for enhancing communications and partnerships to better serve dual eligibles and other low-income beneficiaries.
See also the Forum Session on which this report was based.