WellCare gets crucial accreditation for Kentucky Medicaid and Medicare plans

Healthcare firm WellCare Health Plans Inc. recently was awarded accreditation of its Medicaid health plan in Kentucky by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). WellCare provides managed services targeted at government-sponsored healthcare programs, with a strong Medicare/Medicaid focus.

NCQA accreditation is based on the quality of care a health plan gives to its members, helping consumers assess different health plans. An NCQA accreditation encompasses how well a plan manages its health delivery system, covering hospitals, physicians and the like.

Margaret E. O’Kane, president of NCQA, said that getting a status of “Commendable” — which is what WellCare received — shows a health plan is dedicated to quality. “It is awarded to those plans whose service and clinical quality meet or exceed NCQA’s rigorous requirements for consumer protection and quality improvements,” she said in a statement.

WellCare serves close to 392,000 Medicaid members, 4,000 Medicare Advantage plan members, and 19,000 Medicare Prescription Drug Plan members in Kentucky.

“Our members often need help addressing their basic social needs, such as proper nutrition or safe housing,” said Dr. Howard Shaps, medical director of WellCare of Kentucky. “To help with this, our community advocacy team matches a member’s need with our database of more than 8,000 coal community organizations that can help.”

Wendell Berry to speak at Slow Money event

Wendell Berry to speak at Slow Money event

Slow Money annual gathering happening in Louisville next month

Since 2009, the Slow Money gathering has brought together food and agriculture entrepreneurs and investors for a conference focused on field-building and change. This year’s conference is being planned in conjunction with Mary Dee Berry, executive director of the recently formed Berry Center and daughter of food activist Wendell Berry, who will be a guest speaker at the event.

While there are a number of local featured speakers, speakers and attendees will come from all over the world. According to the website:

Since mid-2010, over $38 million has flowed from Slow Money funders to more than 350 small food enterprises, mostly in the US and a few abroad. Twenty-one local networks and 13 investment clubs have formed.

The event will take place at the Kentucky Center for the Arts, Nov. 10-12. Early registration through Oct. 30 saves you $50 on fees, which are, well, pretty steep. More information on the website.