Centene Corporation Notified of Final ABD Regional Selections

November 15, 2006 at 12:22 PM EST

Buckeye Subsidiary To Serve Four Regions

ST. LOUIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 15, 2006--Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) today announced that its Ohio subsidiary, Buckeye Community Health Plan (Buckeye), has been notified by the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services (ODJFS) that the selections for Medicaid Aged, Blind & Disabled (ABD) contracts are now final. Buckeye expects to serve four regions in the state including the Northwest, East Central, Southwest and Northeast.

On October 26, 2006 the ODJFS informed Buckeye that it had identified "an extremely improbable information systems error," which would have resulted in a new RFA for two of the four regions previously selected for Buckeye. According to the most recent notification from ODJFS, there will not be a new RFA. Furthermore, Buckeye will immediately enter into a readiness review for the Southwest and East Central regions, in addition to those currently underway for the Northeast & Northwest regions.

The final contract award is subject to regulatory approval, as well as a readiness review process by the state. Implementation is expected to take place on a region-by-region basis beginning December 1, 2006 with the Northeast region. Complete enrollment is expected no later than May 2007.

Michael F. Neidorff, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Centene Corporation, stated, "The selection of Buckeye to serve these four Ohio regions is significant. We view this as an opportunity where we can have an important impact in serving the health needs of the ABD population. We look forward to working with the state on the enrollment of these members."

"We are pleased with the ODJFS announcement and are moving forward appropriately with this opportunity," said Kathleen R. Crampton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Buckeye. "We are excited about the challenges before us and will continue working with providers, dedicated local staff and community partners to deliver the best possible healthcare services to our ABD members."

As of September 30, Buckeye served 88,300 recipients under Ohio's Medicaid Covered Families and Children Program.

About Centene Corporation

Centene Corporation provides multi-line managed care programs and related services to individuals receiving benefits under Medicaid, including Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). The Company operates health plans in Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio, Texas and Wisconsin. In addition, the Company contracts with other healthcare organizations to provide specialty services, including behavioral health, disease management, managed vision, nurse triage, pharmacy benefit management and treatment compliance. Information regarding Centene is available via the Internet at www.centene.com.

About Buckeye Community Health Plan

About Buckeye Community Health Plan is a health maintenance organization that has been providing services in Ohio since 2004. Buckeye is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Centene Corporation, a leading multi-line healthcare enterprise offering both core Medicaid and specialty services. Information regarding Buckeye is available via the Internet at www.bchpohio.com.

CONTACT: Centene Corporation
Lisa M. Wilson, 212-759-3929
Senior Vice President, Investor Relations
or
Robert J. Schenk, 314-725-4477
Vice President, Corporate Marketing and Communications

SOURCE: Centene Corporation