317:1-3-4. State Plan Amendment and Rate Committee
(a) Definitions. Unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, the following words and terms when used in this section are defined as follows:
(1) Public Process means a process as defined by federal law under 42 U.S.C. § 1396(a)(13)A.
(2) State Plan Amendment meansthe document described in the Federal Regulations at 42 C.F.R. § 430.10.
(3) State Plan Amendment and Rate Committee (SPARC) means a committee comprised of administrative and executive level staff designated by the Chief Executive Officer for the Oklahoma Health Care Authority. The SPARC facilitates the rate setting process by conducting public hearings at which the public, vendors, and OHCA staff are afforded the opportunity to provide testimony and documented evidence in support of rate recommendations. The SPARC only operates to make recommendations for changes to rates that necessitate a State Plan Amendment and/or Waiver Amendment. Rates that do not necessitate a State Plan Amendment and/or Waiver Amendment do not require a hearing.
(4) Rate Change means a change that affects the numerical value of payment from the Medicaid agency to the provider including the application of pre-existing factors that increase or decrease a rate. A rate change is not a method change. Rates found in contracts are excluded from the definition of rate change because they are set consensually in a contract. A method or methodology change, as defined below, is not a rate change.
(5) Method Change or Methodology Change means a change to how the rate is calculated, not the end result of the rate. In Medicaid rate setting the application of pre-existing factors many times, results in rate changes. The application of pre-existing factors, even if it results in a different rate is not a method change. A method change occurs when OHCA adds, subtracts or alters the factors used to construct the rate.
(b) Meeting of the State Plan Amendment and Rate Committee (SPARC). In certain instances the SPARC meets to hold public hearings regarding rates set by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority. Under certain provisions of federal law, the agency is required to hold a public hearing to gather public comment regarding proposed method changes or methodology changes regarding the rates it pays its medical providers.
(1) The SPARC only meets when a method change or methodology change occurs in a rate paid from OHCA to a medical provider.
(2) The SPARC does not meet to establish any contractually set rate to a contractor or a contractually bid rate nor does the SPARC meet to hear rate changes.
(c) SPARC public hearing process.
(1) The seven person panel conducts an open meeting under the Oklahoma Open Meetings Act.
(2) The proceedings are recorded.
(3) The panel hears agency presentations of proposals for method changes or methodology changes and considers comments of any member of the public who desires to comment upon the rate. The Chairperson controls both the agency presentation of proposals and the presentation of comments on the proposed method change.
(4) The panel votes to approve or disapprove the proposed method change in the open meeting, but may adjourn the meeting to gather further information, if necessary. The panel also may adjourn for legal advice during the proceeding. The OHCA board will vote to approve or disapprove the rate methodology upon approval by the SPARC.
(d) Composition of the SPARC. The Chief Executive Officer appoints officials to serve on the SPARC. Officials may consist of OHCA employees and other state agency employees whose agencies assist in the administration of the Medicaid State Plan and/or Waiver programs. A regular alternate for each official may be approved. In such cases an official is unable to attend a committee meeting, he or she must notify the regular alternate and OHCA Chairperson.