HHS Office of Inspector General officials say the agency will be significantly restricted in its ability to monitor and address Medicare and Medicaid fraud and abuse within the nation's health care system in the coming years, citing budget and staffing cuts and hiring freezes, according to an internal document obtained by the Center for Public Integrity.
The document states, "As OIG's budget resources decline, so do our enforcement and oversight activities," adding that it "will not be able to keep pace" with the expected jump in taxpayer-subsidized health care under the Affordable Care Act, "maintain/expand our highly successful Medicare Fraud Strike Forces, or keep pace with the expected need for growth to combat ongoing health care fraud."
...Other projects that HHS OIG planned for 2013 but have been canceled include:
• An audit of computer systems security for the ACA insurance exchanges;
• An investigation of nursing homes to determine possible overuse of controversial antipsychotic treatments;
• An analysis of efforts by state governments and Medicaid managed care groups to uncover fraud and abuse;
• A probe of pharmaceutical drugs that are being marketed under the Medicare Part D program without FDA's clearance for safety and effectiveness; and
• An investigation into fraudulent suppliers of high-cost durable medical equipment.
The chart above comes to us from the HHS itself (PDF). Its spending goes up every year and includes incredible waste and fraud. The official numbers say the HHS is spending half a billion dollars on "Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control" (up more than double), $289 million on its "headquarters" building and administrative staff (up 50 percent), and another half a billion on a separate "Center for Tobacco Products" (up more than double).
But there's not enough money to secure the private health care information of the American people.
It's never enough. Never. And don't ask how many of these billions of dollars are going into the pockets of public sector union employees who vote overwhelmingly Democrat. Put simply, the federal government is the Democrat Party. They are one and the same. And no amount of taxpayer money will ever be enough.
Hat tip: BadBlue Tech News.