Federal Officials Approve Calif. Cuts In Medicaid
Gov. Jerry Brown sought the waiver from the Obama administration to reduce reimbursements to doctors, pharmacies, nursing homes and other providers by 10 percent.
Los Angeles Times: California Gets OK For Large Cuts To Medi-Cal
The Obama administration will allow California to cut hundreds of millions of dollars from Medi-Cal, a move doctors and experts say will make it harder for the poor to get medical treatment. California plans to reduce rates by 10 percent to many providers, including physicians, dentists, clinics, pharmacies and most nursing homes, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced Thursday (Gorman, 10/28).
The Sacramento Bee: Obama Administration OKs Cuts To California Doctors' Reimbursement
The Obama administration approved significant Medi-Cal cuts Thursday that health care providers and patient advocates warn will reduce access for California's most vulnerable residents. The decision by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services allows California to cut reimbursement rates by 10 percent for doctors, pharmacists and others who serve the state's 7.7 million Medi-Cal patients. It's a budget victory for Gov. Jerry Brown, who relied on the cut to save $623 million in the state budget. California will fall short of that entire amount, however, because it agreed to preserve rates for pediatric services and home health care (Yamamura, 10/28).
The Hill: Obama Administration Approves Massive Medicaid Cuts Requested By California
The Obama administration on Thursday approved hundreds of millions of dollars in cuts to California's Medicaid program that the state had requested to shore up its dismal finances. The state's Democratic governor, Jerry Brown, this summer requested the authority to slash Medicaid payments to providers by 10 percent to save $623 million this year and next. Cindy Mann, director of the federal Center for Medicaid and State Operations, said Thursday that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has partially approved the request while rejecting cuts that would have affected beneficiaries’ access to care (Pecquet, 10/27).
California Healthline: Access At Issue In Medi-Cal Cuts
California had one of the lowest Medicaid provider rates in the nation, even before this recent 10 percent reduction. But according to Carol Havens, president of the California Academy of Family Physicians, the rate reduction really affects patients, not doctors. "Providers now, at the current level of reimbursement, have to make a decision about how many Medi-Cal patients they will see," Havens said (Gorn, 10/28).
Meanwhile, North Carolina officials are also struggling to cut Medicaid expenses.
Associated Press/Houston Chronicle: Different Takes On NC Medicaid Shortfall Argued
Republican budget-writers and Democratic Gov. Beverly Perdue's administration quarreled Thursday over why North Carolina's Medicaid program could face a $139 million shortfall this coming year. State health regulators told the Legislature's chief oversight committee they're falling short of meeting $356 million in net reductions for the division that oversees Medicaid, the government-run health care plan for poor children, older adults and the disabled. They said the savings are difficult, if not impossible to come by this year in part due to slow enrollment of the chronically ill in the state's managed-care arm (Robertson, 10/27).