- February 16th 2012
Federal health officials on Feb. 6 denied a request by California to charge a variety of co-payments to most of its Medicaid enrollees.
The co-pays would have ranged from $3 for prescriptions filled at pharmacies to $100 for inpatient hospital stays. The state expected the co-pays to generate $600 billion beginning in October 2013, said Norman Williams, spokesman for the California Dept. of Health Care Services, the state's Medicaid agency.
But the state cannot implement the co-pays under a demonstration waiver, as it requested in December 2011, according to a letter from Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services acting Administrator Marilyn Tavenner to California's Medicaid agency. The co-pays are neither temporary nor targeted at a specific population, both of which are requirements in federal Medicaid law.
California is examining its options, including administratively appealing the federal decision, Williams said.
California Medical Assn. President James T. Hay, MD, ap [Read more]