MAA Whirlwind: Time Surveying Continues for California LEAs in FY 2013/14

December 3, 2013 – San Francisco, CA – It’s the day after the state’s deadline for the newly required school MAA claim plan documentation, which will enable LEAs to continue time surveying in FY 2013/14 in order to receive federal reimbursements for Medi-Cal Administrative Activities occurring at school sites (“SMAA”). The flurry of activity to get to this point has been astounding, and certainly deserves recognition.

California LEAs and regional agencies were put on some tight deadlines to apply the state’s new claiming criteria, and subsequently create a whole host of documentation to justify local LEA programs.

Oct 22, 2013 – California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) released Policy and Procedure Letter (PPL) 13-008 notifying all LEAs that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) had informally approved interim claiming for FY 2013/14, and that time surveying would begin December 9. This PPL also introduced new requirements regarding who may participate in the program, how to document and legitimize participant lists, as well as how to appeal for deviations from the pre-approved list.

This kick-started a process in which the LEAs began documenting the daily activities of all who participated in their local programs—is essence, expounding on pre-existing job descriptions to thoroughly justify why a particular job category is included in the local MAA program.

Nov 1, 2013 – DHCS hosted a webinar to discuss the current payment deferral and newly issued reasonableness test criteria (RTC) for past invoices. While this webinar was not specifically geared toward the new Q2 claim plan requirements, the state clarified their expectations on how LEAs should be documenting the daily activities of participants for FY 2013/14 interim claiming. The state also confirmed in this webinar that only new participants were required to receive training before the Dec 9 time survey period. This was a welcome relief for many LEAs, as time and energy was already allocated to the new documentation requirements.

Nov 13, 2013 – DHCS released PPL 13-015 that amended the requirements outlined in PPL 13-008. DHCS also included a revised participant list that now specified the activity codes for each job category on the pre-approved list. This meant that LEAs needed to again evaluate their claim plan to identify activity codes that will be used by job categories not on the pre-approved list (as opposed to just job categories), and adjust their documentation accordingly.

Not only did LEAs need to have their documentation prepared and ready to send to the state, but the regional agencies (LECs and LGAs) representing the individual LEAs needed time to review the documentation and endorse the claim plans—they were due to the state on December 2, 2013. Paradigm is proud to announce that its clients were able to create their documentation (and adjust it according to the changing requirements) in a timely manner and meet their regional agencies’ deadlines.

As mentioned, the flurry of activity required on the part of the LEAs and regional agencies was astounding and we would like to congratulate both the LEAs and regional agencies for being able to quickly accommodate the new requirements for interim claiming this year, ultimately allowing for continued federal reimbursement for work LEAs conduct to support Medi-Cal programs for their students.

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