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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, October 28, 2005
CONTACT: AHCA Press Office Jonathan Burns 850-922-5871

Agency for Health Care Administration Acts to Make Oxygen Available to Medicaid Participants in the Wake of Hurricane Wilma

~Temporary easing of prescription requirements to ensure patients receive are they need~

TALLAHASSEE - The Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) today announced it will temporarily allow Medicaid Durable Medical Equipment (DME) providers to provide oxygen to Medicaid participants without a prescription. This change will ease the burden on Oxygen-dependent patients who may find it difficult to obtain refill prescriptions from physicians in the wake of Hurricane Wilma. Medicaid DME providers will be authorized to provide Oxygen refills without a prescription until November 18, 2005.

"As we work together to recover from the effects of Wilma, our top priority continues to be ensuring Florida's most vulnerable have access to the care they depend on," said AHCA Secretary Alan Levine. "This change will protect continuity of care for Medicaid participants who may be unable to reach their prescribing physician."

Medicaid DME providers are being notified of the change, and participants in need of assistance should contact their local Medicaid area office. Medicaid patients using Oxygen must continue to obtain Oxygen refills through Medicaid-participating DME providers. Medicaid may conduct audits to ensure that services are being directed to those who need them.

Working to improve access to affordable, quality health care to all Floridians, the state Agency for Health Care Administration administers Florida's $14 billion Medicaid program, licenses and regulates more than 32,000 health care facilities and 30 health maintenance organizations, and publishes health care data and statistics.

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Last updated: November 09, 2007

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