So Obamacare is going to save us money and undoubtably run like a swiss watch. Most government programs do.
Just picture the following on a national scale and be afraid. Be very afraid.
Also, keep in mind that this department was created in 2009, just 3 years ago.
By Snejana Farberov:
In Washington DC, being dead is no reason not to take full advantage of one’s health care benefits.
A new audit by the Office of the Inspector General has revealed that the municipality spent nearly $700,000 on Medicaid coverage for the deceased.
In total, there were 129 cases involving payments for services rendered that were made after a patient had died.
In one case, a payment was made nearly nine years after the patient’s passing.
According to the audit, the city’s Department of Health Care Finance shelled out nearly $4 million in erroneous payments in 2009, most of which went toward claims with an invalid or nonexistent Social Security number.
Officials are also investigating allegations that the department might have overpaid its billings by $22.6 million.
Some of the overpayments have been blamed on changes in insurance rates between the time of billing and the time of payment.
While the department, which was created in 2009, has corrected many of the clerical errors that caused these costly gaffes, the findings of the audit are likely to result in calls for increased scrutiny of its operations at an upcoming oversight hearing.
“We will dig into why this happened, what has been done to correct it, and how to prevent similar overpayments from happening in the future”, said at-large DC Councilman David Catania, who chairs the Council’s Committee on Health.
In response to the audit, a spokesperson for the agency told the Washington Examiner that in December 2010, the department put into place a new system capable of discontinuing payments after a patient’s death. What a great idea!
The department’s troubles do not stop there, however. The audit has found that the agency paid $22.6 million extra on Medicaid claims totaling $124 million. In one case, the department nearly made a payment of $5.6 million for a $100 claim.
According to the spokesperson, it was a case of ‘fat fingers’ that nearly caused the multimillion-dollar error when a clerk held down the ‘5’ key long enough to create a $5.6 million entry.
Officials are now going over all 78,361 claims that might include an error.
In its first year of operation, the Department of Health Care Finance paid about $1 billion.