by Nick Budnick for Oregon Live
on August 21, 2014, updated August 22, 2014
Federal officials have thrown a wrench into the state's high-stakes reforms to the Oregon Health Plan, threatening a program that serves one in four Oregonians.
A new directive could eventually even force the state to return hundreds of millions of dollars received from the federal government – money that's already largely spent.
The federal agency that holds the purse strings for care of nearly 1 million low-income Oregon Health Plan members recently harshly criticized the state's system for distributing money to regional coordinated care organizations under the reforms.
The Aug. 7 letter from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says the state is employing "high-risk practices" as well as projections that "differ greatly" from those used by the CCOs themselves.