I was assigned to following the case "Douglas v. The independent Living Center of Southern California". in California there is a tight financial situation and one of the states larger expense is Healthcare. As a result in 2008 and 2009 the state cut 1-10% of the Medi - Cal reimbursement budget .The main topic (question/concern) of "Douglas v. Independent Living Center of Southern California" is not the legality of the actual cuts to the health care budget. It is whether or not the healthcare beneficiaries and providers can sue the state for not meeting the required reimbursement rates.
Medicaid is federally funded healthcare that reimburses healthcare providers for servicing individuals who qualify. If a state chooses accept federal funding it is mandatory that the state give out a reasonable amount of money to medicare providers, If not the funding for healthcare for the state will be shut down.
Medicaid providers and recipients in California attempted to sue the state to prevent budget cuts. The healthcare providers are using the Supremacy Clause , which basically states that federal law trumps state law. If the state is not following the federal law then the state can be sued under there Ex Parte Young , which would allow the state to be sued for acting in a unconstitutional manner .
The case reached the Supreme Court in October of 2011. The defense has made a point that if this is allowed federal agencies will be bombarded with other cases thats are also arguing that the state is not following the federal law. Making it difficult for them to handle anything but the cases.The prosecution responded saying they had no intention of doing this they just simply wanted to make sure they are allowed to exercise their rights to fight.
A decision has not been reach as of yet. The Supreme Court is expected to have a final ruling sometime next year. The case is not expected to rule in favor of the people and providers of the California medicare system. Personally I do not expect to see them come out completely successful either because the defense most laws likely correct when they said that other organizations or people will also try and sue the, state arguing that it has acted unconstitutionally. If the state has acted as such it should be handled fairly and not given a final ruling under the impression that if it as allowed it will only bring chaos. Sadly the case will most likely be given a ruling with future cases in mind.Therefore not allowing these organizations to sue the state.