KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Medicaid Highlights: Calif. Medi-Cal Payments Could Be Hurting Patient Access

Shortcomings are examined in programs in California, where low reimbursements are discouraging doctors, and Kansas, where there's a large waiting list for developmentally disabled care.

San Jose Mercury News: Medi-Cal Compensation Inadequate, Doctors Say, As Enrollment Boom Looms
When Dr. Jerold Kaplan made a home visit last year to a man with a foot wound, he billed Medi-Cal -- the state's health care program for the poor and disabled -- what he thought was a modest $90. His payment: $8.96. … As California gears up for a major expansion of Medi-Cal under national health reform, such compensation is leading to a critical concern: Will enough physicians be willing to see the influx of new patients? ... "Medi-Cal has gotten so ridiculous in its reimbursement there are a lot of doctors that aren't interested in working for it," Kaplan said (Kleffman, 7/22).

Kansas Health Institute News: Group Aims To Reduce Medicaid Waiting Lists For Developmentally Disabled Services
A Kansas group campaigning to reduce the waiting list for services for the developmentally disabled is holding meetings and trying to build grassroots support for its effort statewide. … Launched in January, the campaign aims to persuade Kansas officials to eliminate a backlog for Medicaid-funded services that currently has about 4,915 developmentally disabled people on a waiting list. About 3,225 people are waiting for any services and about 1,690 are on the list to receive additional services (Sherry, 7/20).

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