DHS: Amplatz Children's Hospital Must Repay Millions

Updated: 11/19/2013 7:30 AM KSTP.com By: Jay Kolls

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) has told Amplatz Children's Hospital it's not entitled to an exemption from cuts in Medicaid reimbursements.

In 2011, a top DHS official granted Amplatz the exemption after a private meeting. The exemption, according to DHS, would help Amplatz get reimbursed an additional $3 million for treating Medicaid patients. But, last month we reported the exemption for Amplatz might not be legal, because the hospital did not qualify for the exemption from Medicaid cuts.

Now, DHS has sent a letter to the President of Amplatz telling the hospital it received a legal opinion that says the exemption is not legal under State law because Amplatz does not qualify, in part, as a stand-alone, licensed children's hospital.

The letter also says DHS is adding up how much extra Medicaid money Amplatz received with the Medicaid exemption and that Amplatz will have to reimburse the money once the total amount is determined.

We asked DHS for an interview to explain how this happened and why Leitz did not receive a legal opinion before he granted Amplatz the exemption, but they did not respond to our request.