BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louisiana’s health department is submitting a revised financing plan for Gov. Bobby Jindal’s hospital privatization deals to the federal government Friday, after previous versions were rejected.
The new proposal wouldn’t change existing reimbursement rates to the private managers that have taken over the LSU facilities. It would, however, establish that hospitals providing services previously overseen by LSU are a new category with a special reimbursement rate.
Health and Hospitals Secretary Kathy Kliebert issued a statement Tuesday saying she’s hopeful the reworked financing plan will address federal concerns and get approval from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS.
Jindal privatized nearly all the LSU hospitals without waiting for federal officials to sign off on financing arrangements that rely on millions of federal Medicaid dollars. Earlier this month, CMS rejected the plans for six of the hospital deals, saying the agreements don’t meet federal guidelines governing how Medicaid dollars can be spent.
The federal health agency took issue with “advance lease payments” that the hospital managers paid upfront as part of the no-bid contracts with the state. The Jindal administration didn’t immediately say Tuesday whether those lease payments will be reworked as part of the negotiations with CMS.