The Michael W. Chapman Emergency and Trauma Center houses the medical center's Surgery and Emergency Services Pavilion. Randy Pench
The Michael W. Chapman Emergency and Trauma Center houses the medical center's Surgery and Emergency Services Pavilion. Randy Pench


Sacramento County to pay UC Davis more than $98 million under health care settlement

By Mark Glover

November 20, 2017 05:30 PM

UC Davis Health and Sacramento County said Monday that they have reached a settlement agreement of a pending university lawsuit over county payments for health care administered to county indigent residents and jail inmates.

The parties said the settlement ends longstanding litigation over UC Davis emergency and medical care dating back to 2008. UC Davis argued in 2009 that when the county got rid of a longstanding lump sum payment agreement and pursued a different model through a third-party administrator, it shortchanged the health system by as much as $125 million.

The parties said the settlement stipulates that the county make a payment of $98 million plus interest over a 15-year period as reimbursement for services provided by UC Davis Health from July 2008 to December 2015.

“We thank the county of Sacramento for working with us to reach an agreement and remain committed to working collaboratively with the county to care for patients in this region,” UC Davis Chancellor Gary S. May said in a statement accompanying the settlement announcement.

May added that “the funds will be used to advance the overall quality and excellence of UC Davis and further enhance the health and public services we provide to our region.”

In a separate statement, Sacramento County Board of Supervisors Chairman Don Nottoli said: “We recognize the importance of the longstanding and ongoing relationship between UC Davis and the (county). Maintaining an array of critical health services such as medical, specialty and correctional psychiatric services is vitally important for those in the Sacramento region. Sacramento County remains committed to its partnership with UC Davis Health and looks forward to our continued work to improve the health of people throughout the Sacramento community.”

The dispute over payments has a long, complicated legal history, including a September 2011 ruling by Sacramento Superior Court Judge Lloyd Connelly that Sacramento County must pay for for medical care that UC Davis Medical Center provided to indigent county residents since mid-2008. At that time, the cost of care was estimated to be in the tens of millions of dollars.

Members of the Elica Health medical team are working to earn the trust of homeless people living on the streets and the riverside woods of Sacramento. They say it is the only way to provide somewhat regular care for the city’s most vulnerable popu


Mark Glover: 916-321-1184, @markhglover