Thursday, July 1, 2010

More promises from CMS that it will police its programs (here Medicare Part D)

Medicare Part D is a federal program to subsidize the costs of prescription drugs for Medicare beneficiaries in the United States. It was enacted as part of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 and went into effect on January 1, 2006.

Medicare Part D has been a boondoggle for big Pharma and the crooks that use government health care programs as their personal ATM machine. The total federal expenditures for the program for 2008 was $49.3 billion. The projected cost to the federal government from 2009 through 2018 is estimated to be $727.3 billion. (See 2009 Annual Rpt. of the Boards of Trustees of the Federal Hosp. Ins. & Fed. Supp. Med. Ins. Trust Funds, Table III.C19.—Operations of the Part D Account in the SMI Trust Fund (Cash Basis) during Calendar Years 2004-2018, Page 120 (Page 126 in pdf)).

But as with all other government health care programs, there is almost no oversight. Here is what the Government Accountability Office has to say about the failure of Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to police Medicare Part D:

"While CMS oversight of Part D fraud and abuse programs has been limited, the agency plans to expand this oversight, including adding on-site audits (which include interviews and other face–to–face evaluations) in place of the desk audits (reviews of requested documents only) it has completed."

How many times have you heard that this line: "the agency plans to" blah blah blah. The Government simply has too few trained investigators, lawyers, and protocols to police its health care programs. Here is a copy of the full report:

GAO Report (Medicare Part D - CMS Oversight)

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