Legislators seek answers on disallowed Medicare payments

Published: May. 5, 2014 at 3:52 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A House committee grilled members of the Jindal administration Monday morning on why more than $300 million of Medicaid payments have been disallowed.

The Center for Medicaid/Medicare Service, or CMS, notified Louisiana officials on Friday that part of the state's contract with those providers does not follow normal and customary business practices.

It specified the practice of advanced lease payments to the hospitals. Those payments total $307 million in Medicaid funds.

The committee wants to know who is to blame.

"If this does not fall in line with what you are saying, you're saying we don't, that it does not affect our budget this year, it doesn't affect our budget next year, but it might possibly affect some payback in 16," said state Rep. Pat Smith, D-Baton Rouge. "Is that what you are saying?"

"Yes ma'am," replied Kristi Nichols, commissioner of administration.

"So we are going to hold you to that Ms. Nichols," Smith added.

State officials said they are negotiating with CMS to resolve the problem.

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