Following an announcement by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services about the temporary moratoria on Miami and Chicago home health providers and Houston ambulance providers for Medicare, U.S. Senators Orrin Hatch, Chuck Grassley, and Tom Coburn welcomed this action by CMS to halt waste fraud and abuse within the Medicare program. The senators had repeatedly asked CMS to use the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”) to stop potential fraud by certain Medicare providers.
Under the PPACA, CMS is empowered to impose a temporary enrollment moratorium on new Medicare providers and suppliers in instances when CMS determines there is significant potential for waste, fraud, or abuse within the applicant type of geographic area. The three senators had repeatedly requested CMS to take action over the prior three years based on evidence from the HHS-OIG demonstrating that the moratorium would stop Medicaid fraud.
“While it’s certainly better late than never, it’s unfortunate that CMS took three years to use the tools it’s had to protect seniors, who rely on Medicare, from fraud and abuse,” said Orrin Hatch, member of the senate finance committee with oversight over the Medicare program. “With CMS finally acting to crack down on fraud in high-risk areas in Miami and Houston, America’s seniors will be better protected from those wishing to gain the system putting their care in jeopardy, while helping sure up Medicare’s finances.”
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