Department of Health and Human Services (61 - 70 of 2,593 items)
Medicare: 2016 Payment Rates for Complex Wheelchair Accessories
GAO-16-840R: Published: Aug 31, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 31, 2016.
GAO reviewed 2016 Medicare payment rates for complex wheelchair accessories—both the fully adjusted rates based on the durable medical equipment competitive bidding program (CBP) and the unadjusted rates for the same items. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)—the agency that oversees the Medicare program—classifies power wheelchairs into five groups ranging from wheelchairs wi...
Physician-administered Drugs: Comparison of Payer Payment Methodologies
GAO-16-780R: Published: Aug 1, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 31, 2016.
Payment methodologies for physician-administered drugs varied across Medicare fee-for-service, Medicaid fee-for-service, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system, the VA Choice program, and two large private payers GAO reviewed. Compared to Medicare, other federal payers generally paid rates that were the same or lower. For example, for 10 high-expenditure drugs, VA paid rates th...
Medicare Part B: Data on Coupon Discounts Needed to Evaluate Methodology for Setting Drug Payment Rates
GAO-16-643: Published: Jul 27, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 26, 2016.
In 2015, manufacturers of 29 of the 50 high-expenditure Medicare Part B drugs GAO analyzed offered coupon programs, which reduce the costs patients incur for specific drugs. Part B drugs are typically administered by a physician. Coupon programs are prohibited in the Medicare program but are generally available to privately insured patients. GAO obtained data on coupon discounts for 18 drugs. GAO...
Sexual Violence Data: Actions Needed to Improve Clarity and Address Differences Across Federal Data Collection Efforts
GAO-16-546: Published: Jul 19, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 18, 2016.
Four federal agencies—the Departments of Defense, Education, Health and Human Services (HHS), and Justice (DOJ)—manage at least 10 efforts to collect data on sexual violence, which differ in target population, terminology, measurements, and methodology. Some of these data collection efforts focus on a specific population that the agency serves—for example, the incarcerated population—while...
Federal Workforce: Opportunities Exist to Improve Data on Selected Groups of Special Government Employees
GAO-16-548: Published: Jul 15, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 15, 2016.
Federal agencies made limited use of special government employees (SGE) not serving on federal boards. As of December 2014, approximately 3 percent of SGEs (1,138 of 40,424) were working as experts or consultants and not serving on federal boards, according to the Office of Government Ethics (OGE). Over a 10-year period (2005 to 2014), GAO found that agencies used an annual average of approximatel...
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: Information on Approval Process for State Innovation Waivers
GAO-16-637R: Published: Jul 6, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 5, 2016.
The Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Treasury (Treasury; referred to together as the Departments) have established a number of controls in their process for approving state proposals to waive certain provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), referred to as 1332 waivers. These controls seek to ensure that approved waivers meet the statutory criteria of...
Hospital Uncompensated Care: Federal Action Needed to Better Align Payments with Costs
GAO-16-568: Published: Jun 30, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 1, 2016.
Key sources of federal support for hospitals incurring costs for services provided to uninsured and other low-income individuals (uncompensated care costs) include multiple types of Medicaid and Medicare payments totaling about $50 billion annually. GAO's analysis shows that through Medicaid, a joint federal-state program for low-income individuals, states made three types of payments that helped...
Medicare Part B: CMS Should Take Additional Steps to Verify Accuracy of Data Used to Set Payment Rates for Drugs
GAO-16-594: Published: Jul 1, 2016. Publicly Released: Aug 1, 2016.
In 2014, the most recent year for which data were available, the Medicare program and its beneficiaries spent about $21 billion on approximately 46 million administrations of 551 Part B drugs paid based on average sales price (ASP). Six drugs—each exceeding $1 billion in expenditures—accounted for 36 percent of all expenditures on Part B ASP drugs, while a different 10 drugs—each administere...
Drug Shortages: Certain Factors Are Strongly Associated with This Persistent Public Health Challenge
GAO-16-595: Published: Jul 7, 2016. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2016.
When available supplies of prescription drugs are insufficient, patient care may be adversely affected. The number of new shortages has generally decreased since 2011, while the number of ongoing shortages remained high.Number of Drug Shortages from January 2010 through December 2015 To help address shortages, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) prioritized the review of—more quickly reviewed...
Veterans Crisis Line: Additional Testing, Monitoring, and Information Needed to Ensure Better Quality Service
GAO-16-373: Published: May 26, 2016. Publicly Released: Jun 27, 2016.
GAO found that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) did not meet its call response time goals for the Veterans Crisis Line (VCL), although extended call wait times were not common. VA's goal is to answer 90 percent of VCL calls at the VCL primary center within 30 seconds. Currently, calls not answered within 30 seconds route to VCL backup call centers; however, for 5 months of fiscal year 2015,...