Date: August 1, 2017 | Category: News
The Missouri SMP (Senior Medicare Patrol) wants to report to you the progress that federal, state and local law enforcement officers have made in the fight against Medicare and Medicaid Fraud.
The Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General led an unprecedented nationwide health care fraud takedown in July. It was the largest in history. More than 400 defendants in 41 federal districts were charged for their alleged participation in healthcare fraud schemes.
The crimes involved more than $1.3 billion in false billings to health care programs. One hundred-fifteen of the defendants are either doctors or nurses. Thirty Medicaid Fraud Control Units participated in the takedown. About 1,000 law enforcement personnel took part. Nearly 300 people were barred from participating in Medicare and Medicaid. That included 57 doctors, 162 nurses, and 36 pharmacists.
These takedowns send the message that the federal government will not tolerate theft from Medicare and Medicaid. The money that taxpayers spend fighting fraud is an excellent investment: For every $1 spent on health care related fraud and abuse investigations in the last three years, more than $5 was recovered.
That’s why the Missouri SMP wants Medicare beneficiaries to watch out for anything that might seem fishy when it comes to your Medicare benefits. You are on the front lines. If you notice something that does not seem right in your Medicare explanation of benefits or your doctors’ bills, question it with the doctors. If you don’t get satisfactory answers, take it a step further.
Report suspected Medicare fraud to the Missouri SMP at (888) 515-6565. SMPs are funded through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Community Living, Administration on Aging.