The Mississippi Division of Medicaid (DOM) maintains a policy in line with the Mississippi Public Records Act (Miss. Code Ann. §§ 25-61-1 et seq.) for any type of information request not exempt from disclosure such as public records or requests for information (RFI). Public records mean all books, records, papers, accounts, letters, maps, photographs, films, cards, tapes, recordings or reproduction thereof, and any other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, having been used, being in use, or prepared, possessed or retained for use in the conduct, transaction or performance of any business, transaction, work, duty or function of any public body, or required to be maintained by any public body.
Types of Information Requests
Customarily, information requests fall into one of two categories:
- Questions that can be easily answered by information that is readily available.
- Inquiries for information, records or documents that are not readily available and require dedicated staff time, processing and agency resources.
Either type of inquiry should be submitted by email or in writing. However, questions that can be easily answered by information that is readily available (including the DOM public website), or are received directly by program areas specific to daily operations, will be accommodated by appropriate DOM staff. Inquiries requiring dedicated staff time, processing and agency resources to provide accurate answers will be handled as an official Request for Information (RFI).
Official Requests for Information
Requests should be submitted by email or in writing (preferably on company or business letterhead), addressed to the DOM Public Records Officer, and indicating the specific information, coverage or records/documentation desired. No more than two people requesting information per company or organization will be assisted at a time. Please refrain from submitting duplicate requests to DOM staff, bureaus or the fiscal agent.
As specified by the Mississippi Public Records Act (Miss. Code Ann. § 25-61-5) and DOM’s policy, DOM will produce the requested information no later than seven working days from the date of request receipt.
If DOM is unable to produce the information requested within seven working days, DOM will notify the requestor of the delay by written notification specifying with particularity why the records cannot be produced within seven working days and will obtain a mutually agreed upon delivery date for the records/information to be released. Requests for medical records or information related to third party casualty recovery cases are not considered public records requests and are not processed within the time line described above.
Fees and Charges
Charges may apply for requests including the processing or retrieval of information or records not readily available (Miss. Code Ann. § 25-61-7). Information or records not readily available will be invoiced for the following applicable charges incurred due to DOM processing the records/information requested:
- $10 per hour or any part of an hour will be pro-rated for clerical staff time,
- $40 per hour or any part of an hour will be pro-rated for professional staff time,
- $85 per hour or any part of an hour will be pro-rated for computer run time or database processing related to the retrieval of data,
- $0.50 per page for copies,
- $7 per CD/DVD, and
- additional charges will be added for postage costs.
Requests estimated at a total invoice charge of $250 or more will require a certified check or money order deposit for the full estimated charges before DOM staff will begin the retrieval process. Upon completion of the records or information retrieval process, DOM will invoice for the final payment balance (if any remains). The final invoice will reflect the credit for the initial deposit. The deposit will be held in escrow until final payment is received. If the final invoice is less than the deposit, the requestor will be notified with a revised invoice. The deposit check will be returned to the requestor upon receipt of the newly invoiced amount.
The charges related to staff time or contractual services is at the pay scale of the lowest level employee or contractor competent to respond to the request.
Requests for Information and HIPAA
DOM processes any type of RFI in compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), as amended, and any other applicable state and federal laws regarding the privacy and security of information. Additionally, the Privacy Officer will be consulted when necessary. The DOM Public Records Officer is responsible for notifying the requestor if, and when, additional information or forms are needed for release of permissible protected health information (PHI). Learn more about HIPAA and DOM’s Notice of Privacy Practices.
Requests submitted by state or federal agencies, institutions of higher learning, or Medicaid beneficiaries are not charged for fees incident to the processing of their requests. Additionally, reasonable requests related to public health issues and submitted by elected officials currently in office and holding positions on a municipal, local, state or federal level will not be charged for processing their requests.
Inspecting Records Onsite
When required, those inspecting records will be provided adequate space to work during normal business hours at no cost. Requested records and information will be provided by a DOM staff member. Those requesting to bring in a copier to make their own copies will be charged for clerical and/or professional staff time necessary to provide the information for copying. Those requesting to provide clerical staff to make their own copies on DOM copiers will be charged $0.50 per page for copies plus clerical and/or professional staff time necessary to provide the information for copying. Copies will have to be made during times when DOM staff is not in need of the copiers for agency business.
There are many resources available online, such as:
- Mississippi Medicaid State Plan;
- Title 23 of the Mississippi Administrative Code;
- Current contracts on Transparency.ms.gov;
- Enrollment reports;
- Eligibility policies and eligibility guideline brochures;
- Provider billing handbook;
- Fee schedules and rates;
- Publications – annual reports, presentations, informational materials;
- Late Breaking News articles and Provider Notices.
Submit a RFI or request for public records in writing, by:
Division of Medicaid, Attn: Public Records Officer
Walter Sillers Building
550 High Street, Suite 1000
Jackson, MS 39201-1399
If you have questions regarding RFI policy or procedure, contact the RFI Public Records Officer by phone at 601-359-6093.