In May 2022, The Baltimore Banner and WYPR entered into a joint operating agreement, allowing the nonprofit organizations to collaborate on journalism projects. This year, we’ve partnered on investigations, ongoing coverage, podcasts and on-air series. Read and listen to some of our collaborations from this year.
Maryland Health Department mismanaged contractor, overpaid $223.5 million in claims, audit finds
An October audit blasted the state health department for not holding a major contractor accountable, even after it cost the state hundreds of millions of dollars in overpayments and millions in lost federal dollars. The Maryland Department of Health in 2019 hired administrative services provider Optum to process payments for the state’s behavioral health care system, providing addiction and mental health services for low-income Marylanders. The five-year contract with one two-year renewal option totaled $198.2 million.
But the audit found the state never vetted any of Optum’s subcontractors, ignored warnings about the vendor from a current customer, and failed to test the system used to process providers’ claims before launching it.
How Baltimore County is betting big on the Security Square Mall site
Baltimore County officials are placing a $10 million bet on the future of rundown Security Square Mall. For decades, it was an economic driver in Woodlawn on the county’s west side.
WYPR Baltimore County reporter John Lee joined Nathan Sterner to talk about the plans for Security Square, which included reporting from The Banner’s Taylor DeVille.
Information on the monkeypox outbreak has been changing quickly. Some Maryland residents have hit snags in getting the vaccine. However, public health officials are optimistic about how the outbreak is being contained. WYPR health reporter Scott Maucione joined Nathan Sterner to learn about the outbreak, which included reporting from The Banner’s Hallie Miller.