Nevada Medicaid patients face loss of doctors

Thousands of Nevada Medicaid patients may soon have to find new doctors.

One of two managed care organizations that contract with the state to manage Medicaid patient care is about to lose a large network of primary care physicians and specialists.

HealthCare Partners of Nevada — a medical group consisting of more than 150 primary care physicians — confirmed that it will withdraw from Amerigroup Community Care on Nov. 30, according to Todd Lefkowitz, senior vice president of HealthCare Partners' managed care operations and network development.

HealthCare Partners said more than 12,000 patients on Medicaid will be affected, although Amerigroup has not confirmed that number.

Amerigroup and Health Plan of Nevada, which is owned by UnitedHealthcare, are the two managed care organizations that now contract with the state. They mostly provide services for low-income families and children.

HealthCare Partners said the decision to end its relationship with Amerigroup was made after "it became apparent Amerigroup had a different point-of-view on how to communicate with patients and how to maintain certain aspects of the relationship with them," according to David Tauchen, spokesman for DaVita HealthCare Partners, parent organization of the medical group. He declined to be more specific.

"We respect the insurance plans — both current and former — with whom we contract, so we prefer not to comment publicly on differences we may have with them," he said earlier this month. "Our focus is on providing the highest quality care and service to our patients and we made a decision that was in line with those priorities."

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