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FL Medicaid Bill Cuts Doctor & Nursing Home Liability

More concerns regarding the healthcare and welfare of Florida citizens are in the spotlight with yet another reform bill passed last Thursday in the Florida Senate’s budget committee.

The Medicaid reform bill seeks to expand the role of HMOs, doctor- and hospital-based networks, and other managed-care companies, allowing them almost full control of managing the Medicaid system, in order to reduce long-term costs, reported the Miami Herald.

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The bill also proposes to limit lawsuits against some private medical school personnel, developmental-disability group homes and nursing homes.

It would also place a $250,000 limit on non-economic damages in wrongful-death lawsuits against nursing homes and also make it harder to sue for punitive damages.

Politicians claim that since Medicaid providers act as agents of the state, they should receive state protection.

The bill attempts to make it easier for the state to manage and avoid fraudulent claims, by ending the ‘fee-for-service’ system which currently pays about 80,000 providers for each service performed, and transitioning to a managed care system, whereby insurance companies would receive a capped amount to serve a patient.