NC advocates sue for people with disabilities


    RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina advocates for patients with
    developmental disabilities say more than 600 children and adults
    are losing critical Medicaid services because of how a managed care
    provider in the southern Piedmont is calculating levels of need.

    Disability Rights North Carolina said Tuesday it and other
    groups filed a federal class action lawsuit for Medicaid consumers
    against Piedmont Behavioral Health Care and state Health and Human
    Services Secretary Lanier Cansler.

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    Piedmont Behavioral covers Rowan, Davidson, Stanly, Cabarrus and
    Union counties.

    The lawsuit contends Piedmont Behavioral used hard-to-understand
    rules to reduce or eliminate services July 1 without giving
    patients a chance to challenge decisions. The advocates want
    services restored until changes are made.

    A spokeswoman for Cansler said the department must be focused on
    appropriate levels of care when money is tight.

    (Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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