Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Administration Going After Medicare/Medicaid Fraud, Waste and Abuse

Time reports, "There is no official figure for how much fraud costs" Medicare and Medicaid "each year, but the National Health Care Anti-Fraud Association (made up of 100 private insurers and public agencies) conservatively estimates that at least $60 billion is lost on an annual basis, close to about 10% of Medicare and Medicaid's combined annual spending." Consequently, "the Obama Administration committed $1.7 billion this past fiscal year for fighting health care fraud, waste and abuse, significantly more than the figure in previous years. Those resources are helping to propel law-enforcement efforts, now concentrated in interagency teams, known as HEAT strike forces (Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Teams) that are focused on seven cities." Gerry Roy, of the HHS Office of Inspector General, said, "We are just beginning to scratch the surface."

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