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Idaho asks US Supreme Court to take Medicaid case

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 2, 2014 at 5:49 pm •  Published: July 2, 2014

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court should consider an appeal by Idaho of a lawsuit challenging increased Medicaid reimbursement rates, according to a petition filed Wednesday.

The state's appeal requests that the justices decide on a 2009 case where five providers say that Idaho's Medicaid rates were too low because they were kept at 2006 reimbursement levels. The Idaho private agencies that sued the state include Inclusion Inc.; Exceptional Child Center Inc.; Living Independently for Everyone Inc.; Tomorrow's Hope Satellite Services Inc.; and WDB Inc.

In 2011, a federal judge ruled against Idaho and ordered the department to raise the payments. The increased reimbursements cost the state $12 million in 2013.

Attorney General Lawrence Wasden filed the petition paperwork on behalf of the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. The petition is the first step to get a case in front of the U.S. Supreme Court, which typically grants and hears oral arguments in fewer than 100 appeals.

"There are several critical issues for Idaho in the outcome of this lawsuit," Wasden said in a statement. "We're asking the Supreme Court to take up this case because the 9th Circuit's decision incorrectly permits private parties to interfere with the administration of the state's Medicaid program and the Legislature's choices regarding that program."

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