§16-2L-1. Legislative purpose.

     The Legislature finds that it inures to the benefit of the state and its Medicaid populations to foster the development of care systems and Medicaid options that allow for the functional integration and participation of privately practicing physicians with provider sponsored networks who have patient-centered medical home resources and who are willing to share access and use of those resources; that privately practicing physicians provide indispensable and important health care services to Medicaid enrollees in West Virginia but many do not have the resources to develop patient-centered medical homes in their respective practices; that federally qualified health centers are deeply engaged with integrating behavioral health providers and other community services in their care of Medicaid beneficiaries and that such centers lead in the development and implementation of recognized medical homes in West Virginia; and that better health outcomes can be achieved and inappropriate utilization avoided through the integration and coordination of physical health care with mental health care. Therefore, in order to develop innovative means of meeting the health care needs of the state's citizens and to address the impact on the state's budget arising from the growing cost of Medicaid, and in recognition of the important role that federally qualified health centers play in providing health care services to Medicaid beneficiaries, the Legislature authorizes the secretary to enter into contracts with provider sponsored networks.