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Families of Disabled Children Sue Texas Health Commission Over Medicaid Cuts

by Reshma Anand on  August 13, 2015 at 6:39 PM Child Health News   - G J E 4
A lawsuit has been filed by a group of disabled children's family and health care providers against the Texas agency.

It has been filed to stop the agency from impending budget cuts that threatens to disrupt the services offered to the youngsters through the state's therapy program.
 Families of Disabled Children Sue Texas Health Commission Over Medicaid Cuts
Families of Disabled Children Sue Texas Health Commission Over Medicaid Cuts
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Earlier this year, state lawmakers passed a budget that slashes nearly $260 million in Medicaid payments to the therapy program over two years. The medical policy reduces around $130 million in cutbacks.

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Health care advocates have launched a public relations campaign against the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC), claiming the industry will lose 20 percent in revenue and nearly 60,000 children will lose home-based "medically necessary services. The recent lawsuit comes a decade after Texas entered a settlement agreement to provide "medically necessary services" to Medicaid recipients.

The families and therapy providers have asked a Travis County judge to stop the state from implementing the budget cuts on Sept. 1, alleging they will cause "immediate and irreparable injury" to thousands of kids in the state's Medicaid program.

"Those rates will force Texas Medicaid providers to cease providing services critical to the health and development of Texas' most vulnerable residents, its children," the suit reads.

An earlier lawsuit in 2005 compelled Texas to provide "all medically necessary services" to Medicaid enrollees, including speech, physical and occupational therapy.

The number of Medicaid beneficiaries who got speech, physical or occupational therapy services from a home health provider grew from about 16,000 in 2009 to 47,000 in 2013, according to the health commission.

Source: Medindia
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