Posts Tagged ‘Medicaid’

Attorney General Bondi gives Broward Health deep discount in fraud settlement

Monday, September 25th, 2017

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Eighteen months ago, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi’s office demanded Broward Health pay more than $5.3 million to settle state Medicaid fraud claims uncovered during a federal whistleblower probe that cost Broward Health $69.5 million.
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House GOP health bill facing fresh House committee test

Thursday, March 16th, 2017
The White House and Republican leaders are talking to rank-and-file lawmakers about revising the GOP health care overhaul, hoping to keep a rebellion by conservatives and moderates from snowballing and imperiling the party’s showpiece legislation.
Four days after a congressional report projected the bill would pry coverage from millions of voters, signs of fraying GOP support for the legislation were showing. The measure would strike down much of former President Barack Obama‘s 2010 overhaul and reduce the federal role, including financing, for health care consumers and is opposed uniformly by Democrats.
In a fresh test of Republicans’ willingness to embrace the

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Heartwarming video shows Medicaid giving hope to Florida’s most vulnerable children

Monday, March 13th, 2017
Health care through Medicaid, particularly for Florida’s most vulnerable citizens — children, the elderly and low-income families — is not an abstract. It is a real need, for real people, and without it, can lead to real suffering.
A fantastic new video shows how the state’s Medicaid program is keeping one Plant City boy alive. It is not just money for lawmakers to spend arbitrarily; it is care for actual people, often those who need it most.
The video is from the Florida Hospital Association, illustrating just what is at stake when lawmakers proposed drastic cuts in the state’s Medicaid program.
The 90-second

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Magic Johnson visits Tallahassee to talk up Medicaid managed care

Monday, March 13th, 2017
Magic Johnson visited with Senate Democrats Monday to praise Medicaid managed care programs that are using town hall meetings and church outreach to steer HIV, dental, geriatric, and other health care to poor people in 60 Florida counties.
The programs have served 9,500 people with HIV during the past four years, Johnson said.
Moreover, “our providers and our doctors look like the patients they serve. That’s very important, because they can serve them better, understand their needs,” Johnson said, providing “the best health care they’ve ever received.”
Johnson, who recently rejoined the Los Angeles Lakers as president for basketball operations, later dropped

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Florida AG touts $165 million recovered by state’s Medicaid fraud unit

Thursday, March 9th, 2017

Florida has proved to be one of the most effective states in the nation last year for recovering Medicaid fraud money.
A report issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services revealed Florida recovered more than $165 million in otherwise lost funds through fraudulent Medicaid cases during fiscal year 2015-2016, the state’s attorney general said in a statement Thursday.
The report shows Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) is working, according to the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services.
“My Medicaid Fraud Control Unit investigators work tirelessly to stop Medicaid fraud and recover stolen

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Rick Scott says ACA replacement is a work in progress

Thursday, March 9th, 2017
Gov. Rick Scott said Thursday that he thinks Florida would be treated unfairly under the current version of congressional Republicans’ Obamacare repeal bill.
Scott did not tell reporters he opposed the bill after meeting with House Speaker Paul Ryan in Washington, D.C., though he did say the repeal bill needs to be fair for states like Florida, which did not expand Medicaid. He also said the bill needs to give autonomy to run their own Medicaid programs.
States like Florida which didn’t expand can’t get treated unfairly,” he said. He also called the current plan “a work in progress.”
The newly unveiled

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Safety net hospital executives travel to Washington in search of money

Monday, February 27th, 2017
Representatives of hospitals that provide a lot of charity care in Florida were headed to Washington Monday to urge federal health care officials and members of Congress to give them more money and freedom to spend it.
Tony Carvalho, president of the Safety Net Hospital Alliance of Florida, said members hope the Trump administration will prove friendlier than former President Obama, who trimmed Washington’s Low Income Pool financing for charity care from $2.2 billion to $608 million during the past three years.
That harmed “hospitals’ ability to care for all residents, not just those that cannot pay for their care. Now

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Federalism message echoed by Florida health subcommittee members

Thursday, February 23rd, 2017
A day after Florida’s House Education Committee voted to send a memorial to Congress seeking fewer strings tied to federal education funding, a health policy panel made the same request for health care funding.
The House Health Innovation Subcommittee on Wednesday approved sending a memorial to Congress asking lawmakers to consider giving Medicaid funding to the states in the form of block grants.
“As you know, Medicaid is supposed to be a partnership. In reality, the federal government is in control,” said state Rep. Frank White, R-Pensacola, who introduced the memorial at the hearing.
“More than at any time in the past, states have

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VIDEO: Matt Gaetz in Tallahassee to promote Medicaid block grants

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017
Congressman Matt Gaetz was in the Capitol Wednesday to discuss health care reform, including his support for a block grant funding method for Medicaid, the joint state-federal health care program for the poor.
After a structured media availability, the former state representative elected to Congress last year held a more informal gaggle with members of the Capitol Press Corps.
Gaetz, a Fort Walton Beach Republican, served in the Florida House for six years.
Below is a Periscope video of his Q&A in the House media room.

More from @mattgaetz https://t.co/9UrTwSPaoP
— Jim Rosica (@JimRosicaFL) February 22, 2017
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The post VIDEO: Matt Gaetz in Tallahassee to promote

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Nursing homes fighting plan to eliminate certificate of need program

Monday, February 20th, 2017
The top legislative priority for Florida’s nursing homes this year is to kill a proposal, backed by Gov. Rick Scott, to repeal a requirement that they demonstrate a demand for new beds before they can expand or build new facilities.
SB 676, by Rob Bradley, and CS/HB 7 by Alex Miller, and would eliminate the certificate of need program at the Agency for Health Care Administration for all health care facilities.
Eliminating the requirement for nursing homes “would be extremely disruptive,” Florida Health Care Association chief lobbyist Bob Asztalos told reporters during a briefing Monday.
The association, which represents 82 percent of the

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Florida seniors, be careful what you wish for with Donald Trump, Medicare

Friday, February 10th, 2017
Florida’s estimated 3.8 million senior citizens wanted change. They wanted to, how you say, drain the swamp? They voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump in November.
With voters age 65 and over, Trump won Florida by 17 percent. That likely was the difference in a statewide race he won over Hillary Clinton by about 119,000 votes.
Here is part of the change they voted for. His name is Tom Price, just confirmed in the Senate as Trump’s secretary of Health and Human Services by a party-line vote of 52-47. Seniors may become better acquainted with him the next few years. He is

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Rick Scott: Obamacare expanded the welfare state

Friday, January 27th, 2017
Florida Gov. Rick Scott, who has asserted that he is helping President Donald Trump work on a replacement for “Obamacare,” made his feelings known about the Affordable Care Act again on Friday.
In an editorial on CNN‘s website, Scott made a number of points.
Among them, that the Affordable Care Act was nothing more than an expansion of the welfare state, and an usurpation of state’s rights when it comes to handling Medicaid.
“With Obamacare,” Scott writes, “President Obama enacted a massive expansion of the welfare state. And, not surprisingly, Obamacare has resulted in widespread increases in premiums and costs are expected to continue

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Congressional Puerto Rico task force releases final recommendations

Tuesday, December 20th, 2016
A bipartisan Congressional task force heavily influenced by Florida’s U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio released its final report Tuesday on dealing with Puerto Rico’s economic collapse offering scores of recommendations for helping the U.S. territory, its economy and it’s people.
Authorized last summer by the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act, or “PROMESA,” the task force has been working for six months to prepare a blueprint for the official federal agency created in that same law that will oversee the territory’s economic governance for the near future, the Puerto Rico Financial Oversight and Management Board.
Most of

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Joe Negron envisions block grants system for Medicaid in Florida

Tuesday, December 20th, 2016
Senate President Joe Negron wants to start prepairing for a day when Congress turns the Medicaid system into a block grant program administered by the states.
“What I’d like to see the Legislature do … is to start building the framework of what a block grant program would look like now that there is a reasonable chance that that could happen,” the Republican from Stuart told reporters Tuesday during a briefing in his Capitol office.
“I don’t want to wait until the federal government acts and Congress acts and we go into the next session and try to build it. I would like

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Donald Trump action on health care could cost Planned Parenthood

Monday, December 19th, 2016
One of President-elect Donald Trump‘s first, and defining, acts next year could come on Republican legislation to cut off taxpayer money from Planned Parenthood.
Trump sent mixed signals during the campaign about the 100-year-old organization, which provides birth control, abortions and various women’s health services. He said “millions of women are helped by Planned Parenthood,” but he also endorsed efforts to defund it.
Trump once described himself as “very pro-choice.” Now he’s in the anti-abortion camp.
Still, the Republican has been steadfast in calling for repeal of President Barack Obama‘s health care law, and the GOP-led Congress is eager to comply. One

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CNN reports, eloquently, on the nightmare that is Florida Medicaid

Wednesday, November 30th, 2016
It’s been ten years, almost to the day, since Congressman-elect Charlie Crist pulled $360 out of his pocket to pay for a year’s supply of thermal blankets for 12-year-old Kevin Estinfil, and pulled the plug on state lawyers who’d been fighting in the Third District Court of Appeal to deny the boy the basic supplies that were keeping him alive.
Back then, Crist was the Florida Attorney General who had just been elected Governor, and Kevin was confined to a Medicaid group home for children with life-threatening medical conditions. Kevin’s case turned up on Crist’s radar thanks to bad publicity

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Marco Rubio promises to push for Medicare reimbursement increases for Puerto Rico

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio promised Wednesday he will push for increased doctor reimbursements for Medicaid and Medicare as part of a package to bring Puerto Rico federal benefits in line with states.
Rubio, a Republican member of the bi-partisan, bi-cameral Congressional Task Force on Puerto Rico Economic Growth, met with an invited group of 20 Florida-resident Puerto Rican business and political leaders gathered in Orlando to seek suggestions on what the task force should push for from the federal commission overseeing the restricting of the territory’s finances.
There, Rubio promised to back those reforms and others including tax credits to assist the people

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Marco Rubio promises to push for Medicare reimbursement increases for Puerto Rico

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio promised Wednesday he will push for increased doctor reimbursements for Medicaid and Medicare as part of a package to bring Puerto Rico federal benefits in line with states.
Rubio, a Republican member of the bi-partisan, bi-cameral Congressional Task Force on Puerto Rico Economic Growth, met with an invited group of 20 Florida-resident Puerto Rican business and political leaders gathered in Orlando to seek suggestions on what the task force should push for from the federal commission overseeing the restricting of the territory’s finances.
There, Rubio promised to back those reforms and others including tax credits to assist the people

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Marco Rubio promises to push for Medicare reimbursement increases for Puerto Rico

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016
U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio promised Wednesday he will push for increased doctor reimbursements for Medicaid and Medicare as part of a package to bring Puerto Rico federal benefits in line with states.
Rubio, a Republican member of the bi-partisan, bi-cameral Congressional Task Force on Puerto Rico Economic Growth, met with an invited group of 20 Florida-resident Puerto Rican business and political leaders gathered in Orlando to seek suggestions on what the task force should push for from the federal commission overseeing the restricting of the territory’s finances.
There, Rubio promised to back those reforms and others including tax credits to assist the people

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Personnel Note: Beth Kidder named interim deputy secretary for Medicaid

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Beth Kidder is Florida’s new interim deputy secretary for Medicaid, overseeing the state’s nearly $26 billion state program that pays health costs for the poor.
Christine Sexton of POLITICO Florida reports the announcement was made Oct. 6 in an email to Agency for Health Care Administration employees.
In the current year budget, Sexton writes, the Medicaid program is slated for $25.7 billion, which could increase to $26.4 billion to pay health care costs for elderly and disabled Floridians who qualify.
Kidder is taking the place of Justin Senior, who left Oct. 3 to become the agency’s interim secretary.
Senior replaced Liz Dudek, who has

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Jac Wilder VerSteeg: Gun foes should “politicize” deaths

Sunday, October 11th, 2015
A recent Dana Summers political cartoon in the South Florida Sun Sentinel and other Tribune newspapers depicts in its first frame a thoughtful-looking Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama saying, “In light of the recent shootings, we need to think about guns and ask ourselves the obvious question.”
Then, in the punchline frame, Clinton and Obama, both grinning now, say, “How can we politicize this?”
It’s an intellectually lazy cartoon that does nothing more than repeat the NRA-approved response when any politician dares to notice the massacres taking place across America. When any elected official or advocacy group tries to offer

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Broward Health’s $70 million settlement leaves risk of criminal charges

Monday, September 21st, 2015

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Court documents describe the massive healthcare fraud that led Broward Health to pay $69.5 million to settle a whistleblower’s lawsuit last week as an illegal “scheme of mutual enrichment” between the hospital system and its physicians. Was it a criminal scheme?
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Illegal kickbacks to doctors to cost Broward Health $69.5 million

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Taxpayer-supported Broward Health has agreed to pay $69.5 million in penalties to settle federal allegations that it paid illegal kickbacks to nine doctors who referred patients to its hospitals in a scheme that went on for more than a decade.
The post Illegal kickbacks to doctors to cost Broward Health $69.5 million appeared first on Florida Bulldog.

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White House wants more aggressive effort on Medicare, Medicaid billing errors

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

By Fred Schulte
Center for Public Integrity
White House budget director Shaun Donovan called for a “more aggressive strategy” to thwart improper government payments to doctors, hospitals and insurance companies in a previously undisclosed letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell earlier this year.
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