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.
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.
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) historically has been an important participant in the mortgage market, which includes loans that carry government insurance or guarantees (such as FHA-insured mortgages) and those that do not (conventional mortgages).
A May 2006 data breach at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and other similar incidents since then have heightened awareness of the importance of protecting computer equipment containing personally identifiable information and responding effectively to a breach that poses privacy risks.
Congress, policy analysts, and groups representing physicians have periodically raised concerns that Medicare's efforts to control spending on physician services by limiting annual updates to physician fees could have an adverse impact on beneficiaries' access to physician services.
The recent security breach at the Department of Veterans Affairs, in which personal data on millions of veterans were compromised, has highlighted the importance of the federal government's processes for protecting personal information.
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides health care to about 4.7 million veterans primarily through its medical facilities--which include hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient clinics, and other health care facilities--and by contracting for care with other healthcare providers.
In carrying out its mission of serving the nation's veterans and their dependents, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) relies extensively on information technology (IT), for which it is requesting about $2.1 billion in fiscal year 2006.
Authoritative bodies have promulgated laws, accounting standards, information system requirements, and related guidance to emphasize the need for cost information and cost management in the federal government.