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Monday, February 24, 2020

Judge issues preliminary injunction for California's newly enacted dialysis reimbursement law

Federal Court

By Marian Johns | Jan 21, 2020

Court

SANTA ANA, Calif. (Legal Newsline) – A federal court has granted a preliminary injunction against the California's Assembly Bill 290, which regulates and caps dialysis reimbursement, stating there is "significant public interest" in enjoining the law while it is being litigated. 

Fresenius Medical Care Orange County and several other dialysis clinics and kidney care facilities sued California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and others Nov. 5 in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in opposition to the law that was to take effect this month, alleging AB 290 violates constitutional rights and conflicts with federal law. They also argued AB 290 threatened "low-income dialysis patients’ access to care." 

In its Dec. 30 order granting the preliminary injunction, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California stated the injunction would "serve a dire public interest" by ensuring that the Health Insurance Premium Program (HIPP) recipients can "continue receiving the financial assistance they need so that their insurance coverage and life-sustaining" treatments will not be interrupted. 

In support of the plaintiffs' argument, the California Medical Association filed an amicus brief Dec. 16 in the District Court claiming AB 290 would "push" patients with end-stage renal disease into "more expensive" care settings such as hospitals and emergency rooms. 

The court's order granting injunction states AB 290 enacted by the state to prevent "the possibility of patient steering and its potential resultant harms" such as the unjust enrichment of providers and higher "out-of-pocket costs to patients."

The court granted the plaintiffs' motions for a preliminary injunction and ruled "AB 290, in its entirety, shall not come into effect pending the resolution of this litigation."

U.S. District Court for the Central District of California case number 8:19-cv-02130-DOC-ADS.

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California Attorney GeneralU.S. District Court for the Central District of California Southern Division

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