Metropolitan Health Plan's chief is leaving

  • Article by: JACKIE CROSBY , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 17, 2011 - 7:39 PM

CEO will trade Hennepin County job for one at a big insurer in Chicago.

The chief of Hennepin County's health insurance program is moving on after five years in the post.

Cynthia MacDonald, CEO of Metropolitan Health Plan, said Monday that she has taken a newly created position as vice president of Medicaid with Health Care Services Corp. in Chicago.

Hennepin County is embarking on a pilot project to overhaul the way it provides health care to its neediest citizens -- the poor, elderly and disabled. The project will coordinate patient care with workers across various county agencies, including housing, corrections and mental health.

The county's insurance plan for the poor, also known as MHP, recently lost out in a new competitive bidding process with the state over providing insurance to low-income families in the Twin Cities.

"Things are continuing on for MHP, just in a different way," MacDonald said. "It's a very exciting time."

MacDonald, a native of tiny Wrenshall, Minn., southwest of Duluth, spent 10 years at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota before taking over Hennepin County's insurance plan.

She said she's leaving because of the opportunity to build a Medicaid managed care program on a national scale, not because of the changes afoot in the county.

Health Care Services Corp. is the nation's fourth-largest insurer and includes Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in Illinois, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

MacDonald's last day will be Nov. 11.

Jackie Crosby • 612-673-7335

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