Garcia introduces bill to prevent health care fraud 

Politics and government

News release 

Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, introduced H.R. 8089, the Medicare and Medicaid Fraud Prevention Act. This bipartisan legislation would enhance and improve the Medicaid validation process of all 50 states to cut down on health care fraud and abuse, according to a news release from Garcia’s office. 

“Every dollar stolen from our health care programs is one dollar too many,” Garcia said in the release. “Millions of Californians rely on Medicare and Medicaid, but rising costs, fraud and abuse threaten to undermine these programs. This bipartisan bill is a common-sense step toward better protecting your health care and ensuring these critical resources are going to those who need it most.” 

The Medicare and Medicaid programs jointly spend $1.6 trillion every year. Health and Human Services Inspector General Christi Grimm recently testified that her office now receives hundreds of fraudulent claims per year, the release said. 

The Medicare and Medicaid Fraud Prevention Act implements a U.S. Government Accountability Office recommendation that would require states to check with the Social Security Administration Death Master File before automatically reenrolling Medicaid providers. This would allow states to deactivate the National Provider Identifiers of deceased providers and prevent any bad actors from using that NPI to defraud Medicaid or Medicare, the release said. 

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