Audit: Mental health privatization increased costs - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Audit: Mental health privatization increased costs

(Source: MGN Online) (Source: MGN Online)

By MELINDA DESLATTE
Associated Press

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A new audit says Gov. Bobby Jindal's privatization of behavioral health and addictive disorder treatment programs has created confusion and added costs for the local human services districts that provide the care.

The review by the Legislative Auditor's Office was released Monday. It looked at the first year of the Louisiana Behavioral Health Partnership, which shifted management of programs to Magellan Health Services in a 2-year contract totaling $354 million.

The auditor's office says the privatization has caused problems with claims payments, which have increased costs for the human services districts and have made it more difficult for the districts to get reimbursed for their services. The audit also says the some districts lost money under a requirement that they use Magellan's electronic health records system.

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