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Court halts cuts in California Medi-Cal program


SACRAMENTO, Calif. A Federal District Court in Los Angeles put a stop to the California state government’s 10 percent cuts to the state’s Medicaid pharmacy reimbursement payments, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores announced Tuesday.

The court found that the cuts caused irreparable harm to patients, pharmacies and other providers of Medi-Cal, as the state Medicaid program is called. The cuts caused pharmacies to lose money and forced them to turn away Medi-Cal patients. The California Department of Health Care Services, the judge’s ruling stated, “has not proffered any evidence showing that the Department considered any of the ‘relevant factors,’ in making the 10 percent rate reduction challenged here.”

The court’s order also covers doctors, dentists, clinics, health systems, adult day health centers and other health-care providers, applying to services on or after July 1.

“This case has been a rollercoaster ride since the beginning,” California Pharmacists Association chief executive officer Lynn Rolston said. “We are grateful for this much-needed and timely victory.”

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