Recommendations would address residential abuse cases
OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter signed a letter from the National Association of Attorneys General with 36 other states and the District of Columbia urging a change in federal policy to expand the ability of the Medicaid Fraud Control Units (MFCU) to investigate and prosecute Medicaid fraud, neglect and abuse cases, including those happening outside of state-operated facilities.
The letter, sent to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, offers the following two recommendations for changes in current federal regulations:
- Allow MFCU federal funds to be used to investigate and prosecute abuse and neglect of Medicaid beneficiaries in non-institutional settings.
- And to allow the use of MFCU federal funds to freely screen or review all complaints or reports of whatever type in all settings.
Read the full letter, here.
Attorney General Hunter said expanding the MFCU’s ability to investigate will help protect more citizens.
“In the last two years, the Attorney General’s Office has successfully filed over 30 charges against providers in Medicaid-funded nursing homes or state facilities,” Hunter said. “If investigators have the authority to expand their scope, they could potentially bring down more corruption and protect more senior citizens.”
Medicaid is a joint federal-state program that provides free or low-cost medical benefits to millions of Americans. According to the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, more than 800,000 Oklahomans are enrolled in the Medicaid program. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in 10 individuals 65 or older who live at home will become a victim of abuse.