Corporate Compliance

Economic panel recommends tackling fraud to curb Medicaid costs

Compliance Monitor, May 11, 2005

Rather than simply slashing billions of dollars from Medicaid, a group of health policy analysts recommended targeting fraud and abuse within the program for the needy, The Washington Times reported May 10.

"We sometimes are paying for people who should be paying for themselves; many people assign property and assets to their children and then start using Medicaid," Louis W. Sullivan, MD, said during a Medicaid forum hosted by the Joint Center for Political Economic Studies and the American Public Health Association.

According to the Times, a Congressional commission is studying ways to cut $10 billion from Medicaid over a five-year period. The Bush administration has been searching for methods to scale back entitlement programs, including Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

In addition to a crackdown on fraud, the panel also suggested

  • capping eligibility, covered services, and reimbursment
  • linking states' federal reimbursement with economic performance (i.e., greater reimbursement during a recession)
  • using reverse adjustable mortgages to help older Americans pay for their care

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