Working to protect taxpayers and Medicare beneficiaries, U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley has introduced legislation to give the federal government more time to pay Medicare providers when waste, fraud and abuse is suspected, according to a November 16, 2009 press release on IowaPolitics.com.
Right now, federal law requires that Medicare send payment within a very short time frame, even when there is risk of fraud, waste or abuse.
The bill Grassley introduced on November 16 – the Fighting Medicare Payment Fraud Act of 2009 – would give the Secretary of Health and Human Services authority to extend the time period in which payments must be made under the prompt payment rule if the Secretary determines there is a likelihood of fraud, waste or abuse. With this additional time, the Secretary would be required to conduct more detailed reviews of the claims in question to make sure they are supposed to be paid.
The Grassley bill also requires the experts in the Office of Inspector General to recommend, on at least an annual basis, categories of providers or suppliers where additional scrutiny is needed before payments are made under the prompt payment rule. To make sure there is action on these recommendations, the Secretary would be required to provide a response to the Inspector General on these recommendations, according to the release.
For the full press release, go to: http://www.iowapolitics.com/index.iml?Article=177068.
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