New judge appointed for Mo. Medicaid lawsuit

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri Supreme Court has appointed a new judge to hear a lawsuit challenging a state Medicaid contract.

Senior Judge Frank Conley of Boone County was chosen Thursday to preside over a lawsuit by Molina Healthcare against the state. The lawsuit claims Missouri officials violated competitive bidding laws earlier this year in awarding part of a Medicaid managed care contract to Centene Corp. instead of Molina.

As part of its lawsuit, Molina wants to delay an open-enrollment period for Medicaid participants that is supposed to begin April 19. Conley is looking to schedule a hearing for next week.

The case was filed in Cole County but was reassigned after judges there had scheduling conflicts.

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