Dear Dr. Customer:
Thank you for allowing me to assist you with your question.
Here is a pamphlet from the State of NY on one program that encourages people who are just above the Medicaid qualification max to 'spend down'.
Logically this would indicate that the program does allow for cash payment. The thing you cannot do is to deny treatment of a Medicaid recipient if you are a Medicaid provider until cash is paid.
This has come up under cases where an anesthesiologists has refused an ordered epidural for a patient in critical labor with complications until cash was presented, The case in Colorado, the patient was ordered an epidural by the OB and the Anesthesiologists refused MasterCard, American Express a check everything, but cash before administering the ordered procedure. That was to be frank just plain stupid on his part and I don't know the out come from a malpractice standpoint, but I would say that the plaintiffs attorneys were jumping for joy over that one. Here is the link discussign the case if you want to see it:
That being said, unless you are a Medicaid approved provider, there is nothing that I find that prohibits you from requiring cash for non emergency procedures or visits.
If you are very concerned, you could contact Medicaid and get a written opinion to protect yourself. If you have anyone in your practice who does accept Medicaid, this would be a good idea since it could be perceived that your practice is discriminating against Medicaid patients and requiring cash when you accept Medicaid in the practice.
I wish you the best.
Thank you again for trusting us with your problem. Good luck and Godspeed.
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