Senate OKs bill aimed at Medicaid fraud
37-8 margin encourages House backers
March 24, 2010|By Annie Linskey | email@example.com
State senators voted overwhelmingly Tuesday for legislation intended to combat Medicaid fraud, a year after rejecting a similar measure amid strong opposition from the state's hospitals.
The legislation encourages whistle-blowers to bring fraud lawsuits, and allows them to share in damages awarded. But under the deal struck with the hospitals, the state would have to sign onto their suits for the cases to go forward.
State officials estimate that up to 10 percent of the $6.2 billion in federal and state Medicaid funds, or $620 million, is spent fraudulently. The administration believes the bill would net $20 million in savings next year...more