Health insurance cost control (11 - 20 of 122 items)
Medicare: Appropriate Dispensing Fee Needed for Suppliers of Inhalation Therapy Drugs
GAO-05-72: Published: Oct 12, 2004. Publicly Released: Oct 12, 2004.
The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) revised the payment formula for most of the outpatient drugs, including inhalation therapy drugs, covered under Medicare part B. Under the revised formula, effective 2005, Medicare's payment is intended to be closer to acquisition costs. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the agency that administers M...
Medicare Physician Payments: Concerns about Spending Target System Prompt Interest in Considering Reforms
GAO-05-85: Published: Oct 8, 2004. Publicly Released: Oct 8, 2004.
Concerns were raised about the current system Medicare uses to determine annual changes to physician fees--the sustainable growth rate (SGR) system--when fees were reduced by 5.4 percent in 2002. Subsequent administrative and legislative actions modified or overrode the SGR system, resulting in fee increases for 2003, 2004, and 2005. However, projected fee reductions for 2006-2012 have raised new...
Medicaid Waivers: HHS Approvals of Pharmacy Plus Demonstrations Continue to Raise Cost and Oversight Concerns
GAO-04-480: Published: Jun 30, 2004. Publicly Released: Jul 30, 2004.
Under section 1115 of the Social Security Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services may waive certain Medicaid requirements for states seeking to deliver services through demonstration projects. By policy, these demonstrations must not increase federal spending. GAO has previously reported concerns with HHS's approval process. GAO was asked to provide information on a new Medicaid section 11...
Medicare: CMS Did Not Control Rising Power Wheelchair Spending
GAO-04-716T: Published: Apr 28, 2004. Publicly Released: Apr 28, 2004.
Medicare spending for power wheelchairs, one of the program's most expensive items of durable medical equipment (DME), rose 450 percent from 1999 through 2003, while overall Medicare spending rose by about 11 percent for the same period, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). This spending growth has raised concerns that Medicare made improper payments and has payment rat...
Medicare: Financial Challenges and Considerations for Reform
GAO-03-577T: Published: Apr 10, 2003. Publicly Released: Apr 10, 2003.
We are pleased to be here today as Congress examines Medicare's financial health and consider the budgetary and economic challenges presented by an aging society. The Comptroller General has been particularly attentive to the sustainability challenges faced by the nation's two largest entitlement programs--Medicare and Social Security--for more than a decade since he served as a public trustee for...
Medicare: Observations on Program Sustainability and Strategies to Control Spending on Any Proposed Drug Benefit
GAO-03-650T: Published: Apr 9, 2003. Publicly Released: Apr 9, 2003.
The House Committee on Ways and Means is holding a hearing on modernizing Medicare and integrating prescription drugs into the program. There are growing concerns about gaps in the Medicare program, most notably the lack of outpatient prescription drug coverage, which may leave Medicare's most vulnerable beneficiaries with high out-of-pocket costs. At the same time, Medicare already faces a huge p...
Medicaid and SCHIP: Recent HHS Approvals of Demonstration Waiver Projects Raise Concerns
GAO-02-817: Published: Jul 12, 2002. Publicly Released: Aug 7, 2002.
States provide health care coverage to about 40 million uninsured, low-income adults and children under two federal-state programs--Medicaid and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). To receive federal funding, states must meet statutory requirements, including providing certain levels of benefits to specified populations. Under section 1115 of the Social Security Act, the Secreta...
Medicare Part B Drugs: Program Payments Should Reflect Market Prices
GAO-01-1142T: Published: Sep 21, 2001. Publicly Released: Sep 21, 2001.
The pricing of Medicare's part B-covered prescription drugs--largely drugs that cannot be administered by patients themselves--has been under scrutiny for years. Most of the part B drugs with the highest Medicare payments and billing volume fall into three categories: those that are billed for by physicians and typically provided in a physician office setting, those that are billed for by pharmacy...
Medicare: Successful Reform Requires Meeting Key Management Challenges
GAO-01-1006T: Published: Jul 25, 2001. Publicly Released: Jul 25, 2001.
Management of Medicare has come under increasing scrutiny. The Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) has had mixed success running the program. The agency has developed payment methods that have contained cost growth, and HCFA has paid fee-for-service claims quickly and at low administrative cost. However, HCFA has had difficulty ensuring that it paid claims appropriately. In addition, Medic...
Medicare: Higher Expected Spending and Call for New Benefit Underscore Need for Meaningful Reform
GAO-01-539T: Published: Mar 22, 2001. Publicly Released: Mar 22, 2001.
Much is at stake when it comes to Medicare reform--not only the program's future but also the nation's fiscal flexibility to pursue other important national goals and programs in the future. A comprehensive effort to reform Medicare and put it on a sustainable path would help fulfill this generation's stewardship responsibility to succeeding generations. It would also help to preserve some capacit...