Supreme Court Dubious on Right to Sue Over Low Medicaid Fees

Washington, DC — Several US Supreme Court justices expressed skepticism that physicians have the right to sue if they believe states have set Medicaid rates too low.

The Justices were responding to oral arguments held today in Armstrong v Exceptional Child Center, Inc. et al.

Exceptional Child Center, along with four other Idaho centers that serve developmentally disabled children and adults, contended that the state had set reimbursement rates that were lower than the cost of care. Low rates could lead to fewer physicians participating, and thus, less access for patients, which violates an equal access provision of the Medicaid statute, they said. Several lower courts agreed with the healthcare providers. Idaho subsequently appealed to the Supreme Court.

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