Nebraska Revised Statute 68-104
Department of Health and Human Services; overseer of poor; county board; assistance; powers and duties.
The Department of Health and Human Services shall be the overseer of the poor and shall be vested with the entire and exclusive superintendence of the poor in this state, except that the county board of each county shall furnish such medical service as may be required for the poor of the county who are not eligible for other medical assistance programs and general assistance for the poor of the county. Any person who is or becomes ineligible for other medical assistance programs due to his or her own actions or inactions shall also be ineligible for medical services from the county.
The county board of each county shall administer the medical assistance provided pursuant to this section. A county board may enter into an agreement with the Department of Health and Human Services which allows the department to aid in the administration of such medical assistance program. In providing medical and hospital care for the poor, the county board shall make use of any existing facilities, including tax-supported hospitals and charitable clinics so far as the same may be available, and shall use the financial eligibility criteria established for the standard of need developed by the county pursuant to section 68-126.
A county board may transfer funds designated for public assistance to the Department of Health and Human Services for purposes of payments to providers who serve eligible recipients of medical assistance or low-income uninsured persons and meet federal and state disproportionate-share payment requirements pursuant to subdivision (2)(c) of section 68-910.
- R.S.1866, c. 40, § 4, p. 275;
- Laws 1875, § 1, p. 89;
- R.S.1913, § 5798;
- Laws 1915, c. 20, § 1, p. 80;
- Laws 1919, c. 128, § 1, p. 302;
- C.S.1922, § 5143;
- C.S.1929, § 68-104;
- Laws 1937, c. 150, § 1, p. 574;
- C.S.Supp.,1941, § 68-104;
- R.S.1943, § 68-104;
- Laws 1947, c. 218, § 1, p. 705;
- Laws 1982, LB 522, § 20;
- Laws 1982, LB 602, § 1;
- Laws 1983, LB 604, § 19;
- Laws 1984, LB 886, § 1;
- Laws 1995, LB 455, § 3;
- Laws 1996, LB 1044, § 285;
- Laws 2006, LB 1248, § 67;
- Laws 2007, LB292, § 1.
- For powers of health district in counties over 200,000 population, see section 71-1623.
- General assistance, see sections 68-131 to 68-148.
- Health services, maximum payments and standards established, see section 68-126.
- Township counties, county board has charge of care of the poor, see section 23-248.
1. Medical services
1. Medical services
A county may be liable for the reasonable value of necessary hospital services furnished to poor persons when the county board, after receiving notice of the situation, neglects or refuses to make any arrangements for the care of the person. Creighton-Omaha Regional Health Care Corp. v. Douglas County, 202 Neb. 686, 277 N.W.2d 64 (1979).
A hospital which furnishes hospital services to a poor person without a prior authorization by the county board acts at its peril with respect to reimbursement from county funds. Creighton-Omaha Regional Health Care Corp. v. Douglas County, 202 Neb. 686, 277 N.W.2d 64 (1979).
County board by statute has been made overseer of the poor and the county board has mandatory duty to provide for poor persons whether or not they are residents of the county. Creighton-Omaha Regional Health Care Corp. v. Douglas County, 202 Neb. 686, 277 N.W.2d 64 (1979).
County is not liable for hospital expense unless authorized by county board even though emergency existed. Mary Lanning Memorial Hospital v. Clay County, 170 Neb. 61, 101 N.W.2d 510 (1960).
Physician must ascertain at his peril the power of county officers to bind the county for payment of his services by county in treating poor persons. Neill v. Dakota County, 140 Neb. 26, 299 N.W. 294 (1941).
The county board of each county is vested with entire and exclusive superintendence of the poor, with authority to employ a county physician. Miller v. Banner County, 135 Neb. 549, 283 N.W. 206 (1939).
It is the duty of a county board to provide the necessary medical services for a pauper patient within own county. Burnham v. Lincoln County, 128 Neb. 47, 257 N.W. 491 (1934).
A physician not hired by county may not recover for emergency services to a poor person where there is a duly appointed county physician to care for poor, ready, willing and able to serve but not consulted. Sayre v. Madison County, 127 Neb. 200, 254 N.W. 874 (1934).
A contract by a county board to pay a specified sum to one who will undertake to provide all medical services for the poor within the county is invalid. Hustead v. Richardson County, 104 Neb. 27, 175 N.W. 648 (1919).
Physician who is paid for treating inmates of county poor farm and county jail may recover from county for services and expenses and quarantining and suppressing epidemic. Plumb v. York County, 95 Neb. 655, 146 N.W. 938 (1914).
County board may either employ a physician by the year to furnish medical services to paupers, or it may employ a physician to attend each case as it arises. Red Willow County v. Davis, 49 Neb. 796, 69 N.W. 138 (1896).
County is not liable for medical attendance rendered to nonresident pauper without order from board. Hamilton County v. Meyers, 23 Neb. 718, 37 N.W. 623 (1888).
If county physician refuses to attend, county is liable to other physicians employed. Gage County v. Fulton, 16 Neb. 5, 19 N.W. 781 (1884).
Duty of county board to support poor is subject to limitation upon the expenditures of the county. State ex rel. Boxberger v. Burns, 132 Neb. 31, 270 N.W. 656 (1937).
In counties under township organization in which a poorhouse has not been established, burden of supporting poor in respective townships devolves upon such townships. Custer Township v. Board of Supervisors of Antelope County, 103 Neb. 128, 170 N.W. 600 (1919).