CHA News

CHA Requests Information From CMS Regarding Medi-Cal Cuts


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CHA submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request this week to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Donald Berwick, MD, regarding California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) State Plan Amendments (SPAs) 11-009 and 11-010. The SPAs would implement significant cuts to Medi-Cal reimbursement rates for skilled-nursing facilities and subacute-care units that are distinct parts of hospitals, as well as establish copayments for the Medi-Cal program.

The letter asks CMS to provide CHA with all the information DHCS provided the CMS Region IX offices and the CMS Central Office in Baltimore related to the SPAs.

On July 12, CHA sent a Public Records Act (PRA) request to DHCS asking for all materials, writings or other public records exchanged between DHCS and CMS regarding the SPAs. In its response, DHCS stated “the Department has not submitted any materials, writings, or other public records in connection with SPAs 11-009 and 11-010 other than the proposed amendments themselves . . . and some interim drafts of portions of an access analysis being developed by the Department in consultation with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).”

CHA noted in its FOIA request that DHCS’ response is contrary to conversations held Aug. 4 in a meeting with CMS where the agency indicated it has been working closely with the state, asking it specific and probing questions related to documentation submitted supporting the proposed cuts.

CHA urged CMS to not come to any decisions on the SPAs until CHA and other stakeholders have an opportunity to review and respond to the information provided by the state to CMS. Contact: Alyssa Keefe, (202) 488-4688,