Taxpayers on hook for additional $60-280 million as part of bungled bidding process
SPRINGFIELD, IL – After the recent gubernatorial snubbing of Health Alliance as a regional insurer, State Sen. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) and State Rep. Chad Hays (R-Catlin) are filing separate Illinois Senate and House Resolutions seeking a rebidding process to allow a regional HMO provider under the Medicare Advantage program.
“There are several thousand retirees just in Central Illinois alone, who have been left wondering if they will have to sever a relationship with their preferred physician over a blatant attempt by Governor Pat Quinn’s administration to box out Health Alliance,” Rose said.
“It made absolutely no sense for CMS to write guidelines for state retirees’ health care coverage that eliminated from consideration the largest health care provider in our entire region – a provider that has served our local retirees well for years and years. Then we learned that Health Alliance’s unopened bid was actually the lowest…so the mishandling of this procurement process is causing local retirees undue stress, AND it’s costing the state money. These resolutions restore some common sense to the procurement process,” said Representative Hays.
Sen. Rose and Rep. Hays cite Health Alliance’s significant (24-120%) savings depending on the comparable bids that were accepted by the state’s Central Management Services (CMS) as the primary reason for a new, regionally-based bidding process. Those estimated costs were just associated with the member portions of healthcare. Illinois taxpayers also stood to save an additional $60 – $280 million during the life of the 10-year contract with CMS, had Health Alliance been given bid consideration.
“The quickest resolution to this whole problem will be if Governor Quinn’s administration would reopen the bidding process. We would hope that a supplemental request for proposal be sent out,” Rose said. “Health Alliance should rebid – and that attempt not be attached to new arbitrary standards created by a Chicago bureaucrat without working knowledge of the 40-year health infrastructure already in place.”
“Implementing a new Health Alliance Regional HMO Medicare Advantage plan would be a win-win. It would ensure retirees throughout Central Illinois can keep the coverage they know and trust, and that the state can realize tens of millions of dollars in additional savings that had been left on the table,” Representative Hays said.