WSHA is continuing to work with the Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA) on an error the HCA made in calculations when making a budget neutrality adjustment in November. The HCA made an 8 percent reduction in inpatient Medicaid rates for prospective payment hospitals, and WSHA questioned the validity of the change. WSHA is working with the HCA and encouraging them to make appropriate corrections for the next adjustment period, which starts Feb. 1. WSHA is also asking that the HCA compensate hospitals for amounts that should have been paid to them between November 2015 and January 2016. WSHA expects to hear from HCA staff within the next few days about what they plan to do to for the February rate adjustment, and we will be vetting the calculations with our consultants. The HCA will need to send notice to hospitals of the proposed changes by Jan. 15 for a Feb. 1 adjustment.
HCA is cooperating with WSHA on a more comprehensive review of the budget neutrality calculations to ensure accuracy. If more issues are found, we will seek additional prospective adjustments to make up for any underpayments. Click here to read more in a recent Fiscal Watch article. (Andrew Busz)