CMS Objects To Exemptions In Rhode Island Medicaid Prescription Drug Copayment Initiative

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Medicaid Prescription Drug Copayment

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Rhode Island will delay until Dec. 1 a new Medicaid fee structure thatwill require about 14,000 Medicaid beneficiaries to contributecopayments for prescription drugs because of federal objections, the Providence Journalreports. Under the regulations, some Medicaid beneficiaries will berequired to contribute copays of $1 for generic prescription drugs and$3 for brand-name drugs.

The state Department of Human Servicesexempted about 1,500 Medicaid beneficiaries who qualify for nursinghome care but receive in-home care to encourage the use of home care,which costs less and is preferred by some beneficiaries. However, CMSlast week objected to the exemption. DHS has not received formal noticeof the objection but plans to redraft the regulations and hold ahearing on the issue this month. DHS Director Gary Alexander said hedid not know how the delay will affect $600,000 in projected revenuefrom the copays (Peoples, Providence Journal, 9/29).
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