Optum, Beacon sue over lost Idaho behavioral health contract

The losing bidders in the $1.2 billion contract to administer the Idaho Behavioral Health Plan are suing Idaho state agencies, according to a July 5 report from the Idaho Capital Sun.

The contract was recently awarded to Magellan Healthcare and gives control over how one in five Idaho residents will access behavioral health services. Through this contract, Magellan will manage care for residents on private health insurance or Medicaid as well as those who are uninsured.

Optum Health, one of the losing bidders, is arguing in its lawsuit that Magellan does not meet the minimum qualifications to be eligible for the contract. Optum has held a contract with the state to operate the Idaho Behavioral Health Plan for a decade, according to the report.

Meanwhile, Beacon is arguing in its lawsuit that its disqualification in the negotiating stage was unsupported by any direct evidence from the state's health department after a judge ruled that Beacon's work on a 2019 report on crisis healthcare needs was connected to its bid for the contract.

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