The Department of Justice announced in a press release last month that Skyline Urology has agreed to pay the United States $1.85 million to resolve allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by submitting improper claims to the Medicare program for evaluation and management services.
By optimizing revenue healthcare, organizations can put themselves in a position to survive and thrive in the modern marketplace of shrinking margins, consumer engagement, and higher cost pressures. This is true whether you are affiliated with billing companies, hospitals, physician practices, or payers. One of the most important ways to optimize revenue is by ensuring accuracy and efficiency in medical coding and documentation.
As the share of Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare Advantage has steadily grown to over 19 million beneficiaries according to a U.S. Attorney, federal prosecutors intervening in a newly unsealed whistleblower lawsuit in California is yet another example of the government's willingness to protect the integrity of the Medicare Advantage program through the courts.
Modern Healthcare reported recently that DaVita Medical Holdings will pay a $270 million settlement to the federal government over allegations that the company incorrectly inflated certain Medicare Advantage reimbursements above the fixed, risk-adjusted rate owed for care.
Modern Healthcare reported in a recent article that health insurer and provider groups were complaining about the CMS' proposal to use more patient encounter data to determine Medicare Advantage plans' risk scores in 2019, saying the data could reduce payments for plans.
As you are well aware, Congress created Medicare Advantage (MA) as a risk adjustment payment program that pays insurers more for sicker beneficiaries. Payers in MA receive a yearly fee for each enrolled member and monthly risk adjustment payments for each enrolled beneficiary, based partly on the person’s health status. This program can be open to fraud. Medicare Advantage payers received about $160 billion in 2015 for approximately 16 million beneficiaries. HHS estimates that the FY 2015 Medicare Part C gross improper payment estimate is 9.50 percent or $14.12 billion, along with the FY 2015 net improper payment estimate of 4.32 percent or $6.41 billion.
An article in Modern Healthcare magazine reported that physicians who serve low-income patients with complex conditions are more vulnerable to financial losses in value-based payment models. The study that found these providers, many of them safety-net providers, didn't have the technological infrastructure to report the necessary data.
Medicare Advantage (MA) is a complex program that continues to gain popularity, with about one-third of Medicare beneficiaries currently enrolled in a variety of MA programs. MA plans are issued by MAOs, or Medicare Advantage Organizations, that are typically insurance companies.