GAO’s reports and testimonies give Congress, federal agencies, and the public timely, fact-based, non-partisan information that can improve government operations and save taxpayers billions of dollars.
In fiscal year 2006, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) estimated it spent over $51 billion on the Medicare Advantage program, which serves as an alternative to the traditional feefor- service program.
Under Medicare, hospitals generally receive fixed payments for inpatient stays based on diagnosis-related groups (DRG), a system that classifies stays by patient diagnoses and procedures. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) annually uses its own data to reclassify DRGs.
In 2005 Medicare paid over $1.4 billion for anesthesia services. These services are generally provided by anesthesia practitioners, such as anesthesiologists and certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs).
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) adjusts Medicare physician fees for geographic differences in the costs of operating a medical practice. CMS uses 89 physician payment localities among which fees are adjusted.
In fiscal year 2006, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) spent over $51 billion on the Medicare Advantage program, which serves as an alternative to the traditional fee-for-service program.
GAO provided to Congress, as requested, a statement for the record on Medicare payments for certain drugs provided to patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD), a condition of permanent kidney failure.
GAO was asked to discuss--based on Medicare: Focus on Physician Practice Patterns Can Lead to Greater Program Efficiency, GAO-07-307 (Apr. 30, 2007)--the importance in Medicare of providing feedback to physicians on how their use of health care resources compares with that of their peers.
Since January 1, 2006, all dual-eligible beneficiaries--individuals with both Medicare and Medicaid coverage--must receive their drug benefit through Medicare's new Part D prescription drug plans (PDP) rather than from state Medicaid programs.