Cutting Payment Safeguards Will Increase Program Costs

T-HRD-89-6: Published: Feb 28, 1989. Publicly Released: Feb 28, 1989.

Additional Materials:


Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800

GAO discussed: (1) Medicare claims processing contractors' payment safeguard functions; and (2) the fiscal year (FY) 1990 budget request for Medicare contractors. GAO found that: (1) Medicare program costs have increased at an average annual rate of 12.4 percent since 1980; (2) the contractors' claims processing and payment safeguard functions need adequate funding to ensure that Medicare pays only for medically necessary care at the rate authorized by law and that the program is protected from fraud and abuse; (3) without the combined control mechanisms provided by the claims processing and payment safeguard functions, Medicare costs would have been at least $20 billion higher in FY 1988; (4) the FY 1990 budget request proposed a 4-percent decrease in the amount allocated per claim for the claims processing activity and a nearly 50-percent decrease in the payment safeguard function; and (5) the proposed $134-million reduction in payment safeguard funding would not be cost-effective, since it could result in an increase of $1.1 billion in erroneous benefit payments.

Mar 19, 2018

Mar 8, 2018

Feb 20, 2018

Feb 8, 2018

Feb 5, 2018

Jan 30, 2018

Jan 23, 2018

Jan 17, 2018

Jan 16, 2018

Looking for more? Browse all our products here