Southeast Arkansas Hospice v. Burwell

SEARK, operator of two hospice-care facilities, voluntarily entered into a provider agreement with the Secretary of Health and Human Services to receive Medicare reimbursement pursuant to the Medicare Act, 42 U.S.C. 1395c, 1395f(a)(7), 1395cc. The Act annually caps Medicare reimbursement. SEARK filed suit after the Secretary sent it seven demands for repayment, arguing that the cap violates the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment. The district court concluded that SEARK’s voluntary participation in the Medicare program precludes a takings claim. The court concluded that SEARK has not met its burden to prove the demands for repayment based on the statutory cap are a taking where the reimbursement cap allocates the government's capacity to subsidize healthcare; SEARK presented no evidence to suggest the cap makes it impossible to profitably engage in their business; and SEARK voluntarily chose to participate in the Medicare hospice program. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment. View "Southeast Arkansas Hospice v. Burwell" on Justia Law