02/08/18 — Eastpointe gives 3 percent raise to health care professionals

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Eastpointe gives 3 percent raise to health care professionals

By Rochelle Moore
Published in News on February 8, 2018 5:50 AM

Health care professionals in Wayne County will receive a 3 percent rate increase following a recent decision by Eastpointe Human Services.

Eastpointe Human Services, a managed care organization that oversees behavioral health services in 11 counties, including Wayne, implemented the rate increase on Feb. 1.

The increase applies to state and Medicaid-funded outpatient services.

"We're always looking for opportunities to help make the communities we serve stronger and healthier," said Sarah Stroud, Eastpointe chief executive officer.

The rate increase was made despite a $12.8 million reduction in state funding and a 6 percent increase in the number of people receiving service in 2017.

"Though our Medicaid system is in transition and funding is tight, we challenged ourselves to make the right investments to ensure our members continue to receive high-quality care," Stroud said. "Our providers are critical to making sure we can do that."

The rate increase also applies to outpatient treatment services for opioid addiction, and Eastpointe has provided opioid overdose antidote kits to help residents.

"We've redoubled our efforts to stem the tide of this opioid epidemic," said Karen Salacki, Eastpointe chief of external operations. "In addition to increasing rates, we've donated over 600 Narcan kits across our service area in the past year.

"We continue to raise awareness to help prevent addiction by hosting community meetings. Helping our providers, who are on the front lines every day, just makes good sense."

J.W. Simmons, chairman of the Eastpointe board, said the organization remains committed to investing in "our most vulnerable citizens."

Eastpointe Human Services, based in Beulaville, is a managed care organization that partners with community agencies, licensed independent practitioners and hospitals to provide residents with mental health, developmental disabilities and substance abuse services.

Eastpointe manages behavioral health care services for residents in Wayne, Wilson, Duplin, Lenoir, Sampson, Greene, Edgecombe, Bladen, Columbus, Robeson and Scotland counties.