News from around the Buckeye State

Ohio to reward primary care providers for holding down costs

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The state says it’s moving ahead with plans to reward medical practitioners who do more to keep patients healthy while holding down costs.

Ohio is launching a program next year that it says will allow the state’s four largest private health insurers, along with Medicaid and Medicare, to change how they pay to financially reward primary care providers for the value of their work rather than the volume of services.

To join the program, practices must submit an application and meet enrollment requirements.

This week’s announcement comes after federal officials said Medicare will provide enhanced payments to certain primary care practices in Ohio through a similar program that begins in January.

Republican Gov. John Kasich’s administration says its initiative will better serve people in public and private care.

Official: City to fix issues that forced Cedar Point closure

SANDUSKY, Ohio (AP) — An official in a northern Ohio city is promising that the city will fix the infrastructure problems that forced Cedar Point to close for a second time in two years.

Sandusky Commissioner Dick Brady tells The Plain Dealer in Cleveland ( ) the water main break that occurred over the weekend was on a causeway that links the amusement park to the city’s mainland. A main also broke in June 2014 and Brady says those issues should prompt the city to look at a long-range plan.

After the break in 2014, the city replaced 1,700 feet of water line that travels under the park’s main parking lot. But Brady says more needs to be done. He says commissioners will likely meet in the coming weeks to develop a “truly redundant system” on the Cedar Point peninsula.

Columbus police officers begin testing body cameras

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Thirty police officers in Ohio’s capital city are wearing body cameras as part of a 10-day test to review the equipment.

The city of Columbus’ Department of Public Safety says the trial is part of its process to select a vendor for the cameras.

The officers, who volunteered to participate, were issued one of six camera models on Tuesday. The cameras will be readily visible to residents who encounter the uniformed officers.

The city said the officers work various patrol assignments in different parts of the city. They will compare the different models and provide feedback. Testing ends Aug. 12.

The department hopes to have some officers outfitted with body cameras by the end of this year.

Ohio agency to test residential program for disabled kids

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The state is launching a pilot program to help central Ohio families whose kids have developmental disabilities that require costly residential treatment.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities has chosen Oesterlen Services for Youth to test an effort that would provide and pay for out-of-home treatment at the agency’s Springfield campus, about 45 miles west of Columbus.

Officials say the department is setting aside $1 million for the program, which will be made available in October and focus on central Ohio youths. The agency hopes to ultimately expand the program statewide.

Officials expect that about $500,000 in services could be billed to Medicaid.

The Franklin County Board of Developmental Disabilities is developing new residential options for older youths who can’t safely live with their families.