NextLevel Health Launches Managed Care Community Network

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

NextLevel Health (NLH) has successfully completed all state requirements and launched a Managed Care Community Network that offers Cook County Medicaid recipients an innovative community-based health plan.

As a Managed Care Community Network (MCCN), NextLevel will be extending health coverage to mothers and children on Medicaid beginning March 1. This final benchmark makes the plan an option for all Medicaid-only beneficiaries in Cook County.

Those already being served by NextLevel Health include seniors and persons with disabilities on Medicaid, but not Medicare, as well as single adults who are now eligible for Medicaid as a result of the Affordable Care Act.

“NextLevel Health was built on a foundational commitment to utilizing community-based care coordination and management as a means of improving outcomes for the members we serve,” said Dr. Cheryl Whitaker, NextLevel Health chairman and CEO.

“That same commitment has motivated us to work diligently to build a groundbreaking health plan that meets the clinical standards and staffing, training and financial requirements set by the State of Illinois,” she said.

Eighteen months ago, NextLevel Health launched a Care Coordination Entity (CCE) as part of the Illinois Medicaid redesign, to improve patient care, patient health and reduce the growth of healthcare costs.

Developed by experienced multicultural physicians and managed care professionals, the Care Coordination Entity used a sophisticated clinical model designed to engage and offer caring support to underserved communities, and to reduce health disparities.

As NextLevel Health has recently successfully transitioned to a full-risk Medicaid health plan, it continues to maintain its commitment to a community-based model for improving health outcomes.

“NextLevel Health has been an enthusiastic partner in the transformation of Illinois Medicaid from a fee-for-service system into a coordinated and managed care system,” said Felicia Norwood, director of the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services. “NextLevel Health has met the very specific capital and programmatic requirements set by the Department of Healthcare and Family Services, and is now uniquely positioned to support the care of Medicaid recipients who choose its community-based plan in Cook County.”

Since transitioning from a Care Coordination Entity to a Managed Care Community Network, NextLevel Health has grown from 60 employees to 100 employees who are dispersed throughout Cook County in three different locations.

“NextLevel Health is composed of passionate and experienced individuals who are bringing a management model to Medicaid that makes a real impact in the communities we work in every day,” said Dr. Whitaker. “Our employees’ experience with Medicaid clients’ cultural and social needs distinguishes our plan as one concerned with the overall health of our members.”

The NextLevel Health network has approximately 517 primary care physicians, 511 specialists and 642 behavioral health providers working to improve the quality of health for its members within Cook County receiving care.

“I’m honored to work with the State, our providers, and our team to improve the lives and health outcomes of our members and our community,” said Whitaker.


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