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Press Release Published: Aug 17, 2021

Comer, Oversight Republicans Demand Answers on Rampant Improper Payments in Medicaid Program

WASHINGTON—Today, House Committee on Oversight and Reform Ranking Member James Comer (R-Ky.) and Oversight Republicans wrote Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure demanding answers for the massive number of improper payments made by the Medicaid program. In fiscal year 2020, one out of every five Medicaid payments was improper and amounted to $86.9 billion.

“According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), there is no program with more rampant improper payments than the Medicaid program,” wrote the lawmakers. “The growth in improper payments is directly linked to states being incentivized to game the system by improperly classifying people as expansion enrollees to receive greater reimbursement rates. Unfortunately, it appears there are no plans to prevent improper payments from continuing to grow, particularly since Medicaid has been designated by GAO as a high-risk area for the past 18 years. In order for us to conduct oversight of the waste in the Medicaid program, it is vital that we understand the impact of each state’s Medicaid policies on their improper payments rates.”

The lawmakers are requesting all state specific Medicaid improper payment rate information from 2015 to 2020 in order for the Committee to conduct oversight over the waste happening in the Medicaid program.

The full letter is available here.