Man Denied Life-Saving Liver Transplant Because of Cuts in Arizona’s Medicaid Program
According to the Arizona Republic, 32-year-old Francisco Felix was in the hospital, ready to receive a liver that was donated to him late Monday night. But the liver went to someone else Tuesday morning because Felix couldn’t find $200,000 overnight to pay for the transplant.
Back in October we posted: Arizona Medicaid no longer covers Tansplants
The new transplant exclusions took effect Friday as part of broader Medicaid coverage changes mandated by the State of Arizona in response to budgetary pressures. (Arizona’s Fiscal Year 2010 enacted budget directs AHCCCS to eliminate various medical and health services for adults. See page 20 of the bill).
In addition to eliminating most organ-transplant coverage, Arizona’s Medicaid agency also is eliminating most dental care for adults as well as coverage of podiatrist services; insulin pumps; percussive vests; bone-anchored hearing aids; cochlear implants; orthotics; gastric bypass surgery; certain durable medical equipment; “well” medical checkups; some non-emergency medical transportation; microprocessor-controlled lower limbs and joints; and it is limiting outpatient physical therapy to 15 visits per contract year. (See list)
As CNSNews.com previously reported, the state’s health-care system for the poor stopped paying for most organ transplants on Oct. 1 because of budget cuts enacted by the State Legislature.
The Arizona Republic reported that Felix is the first liver-transplant patient known to be affected by changes in the state’s Medicaid program, but he won’t be the last. More at CNS News