Monday, July 18, 2005

Medicaid Scandal

Does anyone assume IL would be much different than NY? Here's some snips from the NY Times article. Then put mental health screening/greedy, unscrupulous people with the state agencies/greedy, unscrupulous individuals out to make a buck and you have many precious children being victimized again and again with our buck. Illinois children in the Medicaid program are already being screened. Proponents "are excited" about it.

some snips:
School officials around the state have enrolled tens of thousands of low-income students in speech therapy without the required evaluation, garnering more than $1 billion in questionable Medicaid payments for their districts. One Buffalo school official sent 4,434 students into speech therapy in a single day without talking to them or reviewing their records, according to federal investigators.
Medicaid has even drawn several criminal rings that duped the program into paying for an expensive muscle-building drug intended for AIDS patients that was then diverted to bodybuilders, at a cost of tens of millions. A single doctor in Brooklyn prescribed $11.5 million worth of the drug, the vast majority of it after the state said it had tightened rules for covering the drug
It's like a honey pot," said John M. Meekins, a former senior Medicaid fraud prosecutor in Albany who said he grew increasingly disillusioned before he retired in 2003. "It truly is. That is what they use it for."
State health officials denied in interviews that Medicaid was easily cheated, saying that they were doing an excellent job of overseeing the program.
"This continues to be an area where we think that we have made substantial progress," said Dennis P. Whalen, executive deputy commissioner of the State Health Department. "But by no means are we sitting back and resting on the accomplishments that we have made."

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