42 U.S. Code § 1395i–5. Conditions for coverage of religious nonmedical health care institutional services

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(a) In generalSubject to subsections (c) and (d), payment under this part may be made for inpatient hospital services or post-hospital extended care services furnished an individual in a religious nonmedical health care institution and for home health services furnished an individual by a religious nonmedical health care institution only if—
the individual has an election in effect for such benefits under subsection (b); and
the individual has a condition such that the individual would qualify for benefits under this part for inpatient hospital services, extended care services, or home health services, respectively, if the individual were an inpatient or resident in a hospital or skilled nursing facility, or receiving services from a home health agency, that was not such an institution.
(b) Election
(1) In general

An individual may make an election under this subsection in a form and manner specified by the Secretary consistent with this subsection. Unless otherwise provided, such an election shall take effect immediately upon its execution. Such an election, once made, shall continue in effect until revoked.

(2) FormThe election form under this subsection shall include the following:
(A) A written statement, signed by the individual (or such individual’s legal representative), that—
the individual is conscientiously opposed to acceptance of nonexcepted medical treatment; and
the individual’s acceptance of nonexcepted medical treatment would be inconsistent with the individual’s sincere religious beliefs.
A statement that the receipt of nonexcepted medical services shall constitute a revocation of the election and may limit further receipt of services described in subsection (a).
(3) Revocation

An election under this subsection by an individual may be revoked by voluntarily notifying the Secretary in writing of such revocation and shall be deemed to be revoked if the individual receives nonexcepted medical treatment for which reimbursement is made under this subchapter.

(4) Limitation on subsequent electionsOnce an individual’s election under this subsection has been made and revoked twice—
the next election may not become effective until the date that is 1 year after the date of most recent previous revocation, and
any succeeding election may not become effective until the date that is 5 years after the date of the most recent previous revocation.
(5) Excepted medical treatmentFor purposes of this subsection:
(A) Excepted medical treatmentThe term “excepted medical treatment” means medical care or treatment (includingmedical and other health services)—
received involuntarily, or
required under Federal or State law or law of a political subdivision of a State.
(c) Monitoring and safeguard against excessive expenditures
(1) Estimate of expenditures

Before the beginning of each fiscal year (beginning with fiscal year 2000), the Secretary shall estimate the level of expenditures under this part for services described in subsection (a) for that fiscal year.

(2) Adjustment in payments
(A) Proportional adjustment

If the Secretary determines that the level estimated under paragraph (1) for a fiscal year will exceed the trigger level (as defined in subparagraph (C)) for that fiscal year, the Secretary shall, subject to subparagraph (B), provide for such a proportional reduction in payment amounts under this part for services described in subsection (a) for the fiscal year involved as will assure that such level (taking into account any adjustment under subparagraph (B)) does not exceed the trigger level for that fiscal year.

(B) Alternative adjustments

The Secretary may, instead of making some or all of the reduction described in subparagraph (A), impose such other conditions or limitations with respect to the coverage of covered services (including limitations on new elections of coverage and new facilities) as may be appropriate to reduce the level of expenditures described in paragraph (1) to the trigger level.

(C) Trigger levelFor purposes of this subsection—
(i) In general

Subject to adjustment under paragraph (3)(B), the “trigger level” for a year is the unadjusted trigger level described in clause (ii).

(ii) Unadjusted trigger levelThe “unadjusted trigger level” for—
fiscal year 1998, is $20,000,000, or
a succeeding fiscal year is the amount specified under this clause for the previous fiscal year increased by the percentage increase in the consumer price index for all urban consumers (all items; United States city average) for the 12-month period ending with July preceding the beginning of the fiscal year.
(D) Prohibition of administrative and judicial review

There shall be no administrative or judicial review under section 1395ff of this title, 1395oo of this title, or otherwise of the estimation of expenditures under subparagraph (A) or the application of reduction amounts under subparagraph (B).

(E) Effect on billing

Notwithstanding any other provision of this subchapter, in the case of a reduction in payment provided under this subsection for services of a religious nonmedical health care institution provided to an individual, the amount that the institution is otherwise permitted to charge the individual for such services is increased by the amount of such reduction.

(3) Monitoring expenditure level
(A) In general

The Secretary shall monitor the expenditure level described in paragraph (2)(A) for each fiscal year (beginning with fiscal year 1999).

(B) Adjustment in trigger level
(i) In general

If the Secretary determines that such level for a fiscal year exceeded, or was less than, the trigger level for that fiscal year, then, subject to clause (ii), the trigger level for the succeeding fiscal year shall be reduced, or increased, respectively, by the amount of such excess or deficit.

(ii) Limitation on carryforward

In no case may the increase effected under clause (i) for a fiscal year exceed $50,000,000.

(d) Sunset

If the Secretary determines that the level of expenditures described in subsection (c)(1) for 3 consecutive fiscal years (with the first such year being not earlier than fiscal year 2002) exceeds the trigger level for such expenditures for such years (as determined under subsection (c)(2)), benefits shall be paid under this part for services described in subsection (a) and furnished on or after the first January 1 that occurs after such 3 consecutive years only with respect to an individual who has an election in effect under subsection (b) as of such January 1 and only during the duration of such election.

(e) Annual reportAt the beginning of each fiscal year (beginning with fiscal year 1999), the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Ways and Means of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Finance of the Senate an annual report on coverage and expenditures for services described in subsection (a) under this part and under State plans under subchapter XIX. Such report shall include—
level of expenditures described in subsection (c)(1) for the previous fiscal year and estimated for the fiscal year involved;
trends in such level; and
facts and circumstances of any significant change in such level from the level in previous fiscal years.
(Aug. 14, 1935, ch. 531, title XVIII, § 1821, as added Pub. L. 105–33, title IV, § 4454(a)(2), Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat. 428; amended Pub. L. 108–173, title VII, § 706(a), Dec. 8, 2003, 117 Stat. 2339.)
Effective Date

Pub. L. 105–33, title IV, § 4454(d), Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat. 431, provided that:

“The amendments made by this section [enacting this section and amending sections 1320a–1, 1320c–11, 1395x, 1396a, and 1396g of this title] shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 5, 1997] and shall apply to items and services furnished on or after such date. By not later than July 1, 1998, the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall first issue regulations to carry out such amendments. Such regulations may be issued so they are effective on an interim basis pending notice and opportunity for public comment. For periods before the effective date of such regulations, such regulations shall recognize elections entered into in good faith in order to comply with the requirements of section 1821(b) of the Social Security Act [42 U.S.C. 1395i–5(b)].”