Colorado State Archives
Executive Orders from the Administration of Governor Bill Owens 1999-2005
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Dan Hopkins 303-866-6324
Mark Salley 303-866-6323
AT-RISK YOUNGSTERS AT STATE'S RESIDENTIAL TREATMENT CENTERS GET SIX-MONTH REPRIEVE
Owens obtains extension from Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
(DENVER) - Residential Treatment Centers in Colorado will be eligible to receive Medicaid reimbursements to help children with behavioral problems for an additional six months until an alternative treatment program can be developed. The extension was granted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).
"The extension was critical in order to provide continued care for these at-risk children," said Governor Bill Owens. "We now have the ability to work with the legislature and the treatment providers to develop a seamless transition to an alternative system before July of next year."
The state had been told that as of January 1, 2006, Residential Treatment Centers would no longer be recognized as Medicaid providers. The change jeopardized treatment for some 1,500 children currently being helped by such centers in Colorado.
The Governor asked for the six-month extension in order to find alternative Medicaid- approved care for the children.
Residential Treatment Centers provide mental health and substance abuse treatment to children, primarily teenagers, with behavioral problems. There are 42 of these centers in Colorado.
This treatment also can be provided by Psychological Residential Treatment Facilities which are eligible for Medicaid reimbursement. However, Colorado law currently does not recognize these facilities and will have to be amended at the next legislative session.
In addition, Psychological Residential Treatment Centers must be nationally accredited. Of the 42 Residential Treatment Centers in Colorado, nine are currently accredited at the higher level and another 17 have started the accreditation process which can take several months to complete.
The Governor's office and the state's Congressional delegation, along with representatives from the Department of Human Services and Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, had been working with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to obtain the extension.
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