SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - The Utah Court of Appeals says the state health department's Medicaid office abused its discretion when it failed to pay for electronic speech devices for some adults.
Doctors recommended the devices for two people whose diseases impair their ability to speak, and the patients sued when the Medicaid office denied them.
One plaintiff suffers from cerebral palsy, while the other has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The state did not dispute that the patients are eligible for Medicaid or that the devices are covered by Medicaid, but said it only pays for the devices for people under age 21 or if they are pregnant.
The appeals court ruled Thursday that the state arbitrarily and unreasonably denied coverage based on the age of a claimant.
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