Supreme Court Considers California Medicaid Cuts

Monday, 03 Oct 2011 01:54 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court opened its new term Monday and considered whether Medicaid recipients and medical providers may sue California for cutting reimbursement rates in the healthcare program for low-income Americans.

The justices heard arguments in a case that centered on the plan by California's lawmakers in 2008 to slash Medicaid payments to doctors, hospitals and other medical providers to help reduce the state's massive budget deficit.

The providers sued to stop the cuts from taking effect on the grounds it would violate federal law. The cash-strapped state said the 10 percent cuts would save more than $700 million.

Washington attorney Carter Phillips, representing those who challenged the cuts, argued before the Supreme Court that a U.S. appeals court in California correctly ruled in blocking the cuts for violating federal law.

California Deputy Attorney General Karin Schwartz and Deputy Solicitor General Edwin Kneedler, who argued on behalf of the Obama administration, said only the U.S. government can enforce the federal law and private citizens have no right to sue.

After the arguments, the Supreme Court took the case under advisement, with a ruling expected early next year.

Medicaid, administered by the states with partial reimbursements from the federal government, can account for a third of a state's spending. It provides health insurance to more than 55 million people.

The 2009 economic stimulus plan boosted the rates of reimbursements for states, with the caveat that they not cut Medicaid spending. As that money ends, though, so does the requirement and states are eager to find new places for savings as their revenues remain well below pre-recession peaks.

The housing bust, financial collapse and economic recession created the largest drop in states' revenues since the 1980s, and California has been particularly hard hit.

Last month, the state reported its August revenue was $65 million below forecast, which could force California to slash spending more. It recently closed a $10 billion budget gap with cuts and expectations of improving revenue.

Even though the recession officially ended more than two years ago, states had to cut spending and hike taxes to a close a total of about $100 billion in budget gaps for the fiscal year that started in July. Many states targeted Medicaid payment rates.

The consolidated Supreme Court cases are Douglas v. Independent Living Center, 09-958, Douglas v. California Pharmacists Association, No. 09-1158 and Douglas v. Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, No. 10-283.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Pew Survey: 34 Percent of Mexicans Would Come to US

Wednesday, 27 Aug 2014 07:02 AM

Thirty-four percent of Mexicans would come to the United States if they could, according to a Pew survey. . . .

IMF Chief Lagarde Under Investigation

Wednesday, 27 Aug 2014 06:44 AM

International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde has been put under formal investigation for her role in  . . .

WSJ: Buffett Makes Tax Whopper on Burger King Deal

Wednesday, 27 Aug 2014 06:40 AM

Billionaire Warren Buffett may be an ally of President Barack Obama's quest to raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans,  . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved