CMS relaxes rules to meet victim needs

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Friday, September 30, 2005

WASHINGTON - CMS has relaxed many of its normal operating procedures to accommodate the emergency healthcare needs of beneficiaries and medical providers in the Hurricane Katrina devastated states.
Federal Medicaid officials are also working closely with state Medicaid agencies to coordinate resolution of interstate payment agreements for recipients who are served outside their home states.
CMS will also offer the following relief immediately:
- Healthcare providers that furnish medical services in good faith, but who cannot comply with normal program requirements because of Hurricane Katrina, will be paid for services provided and will be exempt from sanctions for noncompliance, unless it is discovered that fraud or abuse occurred.
- Crisis services provided to Medicare and Medicaid patients who have been transferred to facilities not certified to participate in the programs will be paid.
- Normal prior authorization and out-of-network requirements will also be waived for enrollees of Medicare, Medicaid or SCHIP managed care plans.

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