Stanley Feld M.D., FACP, MACE
President Obama’s goal is to have the government be the single party payer for the entire healthcare system.
There is no doubt in my mind that the government as the single party payer will not work for patients or physicians.
President Obama cannot control CMS’s misuse of it assignments because bureaucratic complexity. One area of abuse and misuse of the department’s power is its attempt to eliminate fraud and abuse in Medicare and Medicaid.
There is no question that some healthcare providers abuse the Medicare and Medicaid payment system.
No one ever asks the critical question. Should the payment system used in Medicare and Medicaid be changed to prevent fraud and abuse?
Never the less President Obama is expanding the old punitive system. He thinks he is going to stop abuse with his expansion.
“ Stepping up their game against health care fraud, the Obama administration and major insurers announced Thursday they will share raw data to try to shut off billions of dollars in questionable payments.”
I don’t know how many times I have shown that claims data to determine quality of care or fraud and abuse is defective.
"Fraud is estimated by the administration to cost Medicare about $60 billion a year, and the Obama administration has beefed up the government's efforts to stop it, bringing in record settlements with drug companies for marketing violations as well as using new powers in the health care law to pursue low-level fraudsters with greater zeal."
This is a small amount compared to the $2.5 trillion dollar healthcare system cost when one considers the government’s investigative costs and the hardship these errors impose on many innocent physicians and patients investigated.
The hardships are enough to destroy physicians’ trust in the government and their desire to deal with the government.
It also serves to destroy the physician patient relationship.
Physician patient relationships are essential to the therapeutic success of a treatment regime.
Physicians have complained about this bureaucratic abuse to their congressmen. Congress has looked into this abuse. CMS’s approach has been to criminalize physicians using questionable data and decisions by unqualified judges.
Chairman Charlie Gonzalez of the House Small Business Committee outlines the problems brought to his attention several years ago. His hearings did not receive much attention.
Opening statement by Chairman Charlie Gonzalez
Dr. Karen Smith a former President of the North Carolina chapter the American Association of Family Practitioners describes her encounter with CMS’s subcontractor for investigating fraud and abuse. CMS’s assignment is to discover Medicare and Medicaid underpayment or overpayment as well as fraud and abuse.
I believe it is important for anyone who is interested in what is happening to the healthcare system to view the several You Tubes I am including in this blog.
Dr. Michael Schweitz, Vice President of The Coalition of State Rheumatology Organizations in West Palm Beach, FL discusses the defects in the RAC system and the need to change.
Dr. Schweitz states that administrative costs in dealing with the government is overwhelming to physician practices. The stress imposed on physicians detracts from their ability to deliver quality medical care to their patients.
Most important is the government’s attitude toward the physicians and their practices. The physicians are guilty until they prove themselves innocent. Government’s subcontractors use claims data to prove the physicians guilt
Another problem is the more the outsourced company collects from physicians, the larger the commission it collects from CMS.
Mr. Timothy B. Hill is Chief Financial Officer, Director of the Office of Financial Management, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. He answers questions from Chairman Charlie Gonzalez
The questions continue to Mr. Hill. He says CMS recognizes its abuse of physicians. He hopes to improve.
Since Obamacare has expanded physicians’ complaints have increased.
Can anyone believe this testimony given by Mr. Hill? I hope his message is not believed by congress. Mr. Hill does not document his department policy changes
“ This week White House officials said a "trusted third party" would comb through data from Medicare, Medicaid and private health plans and turn questionable billing over to insurers or government investigators. That third party organization has yet to be selected.”
With the impending a thirty percent reduction in Medicare payments on January 1, 2013 physicians will not be able to afford care for Medicare and Medicaid patients.
Mr. Joseph A. Schraad, MHA Chief Executive Officer Oklahoma Allergy and Asthma Clinic, in Oklahoma City, describes the challenges that the practice he manages face. Less and less providers are going to accept Medicare.
Dr. Forrest in his direct care payment model for patients describes the formula he uses to avoid the government’s interference with his practice of medicine. He talk is riveting.
Other formulas can be used. The You Tubes presented here demonstrate that the Judge (CMS) is using the wrong formula. The CMS cannot control their outsourced venders who have inappropriate incentives.
The are driving physician away from accepting Medicare and Medicaid payments. In the process patients lose
The way to solve fraud and abuse is to have patients police the healthcare system. Patients can uncover fraud and abuse if they own their healthcare dollar and have financial incentives to save unspent money in a retirement fund.
Education and financial incentives will make consumers productive consumers.
The way to approach physicians is not to assume they are criminals and subject them to the stress and expense to defend them in a defective evaluation system.
Physicians must be educated on how to improve coding efficiency and the government’s system of measurement must be made more accurate and less complex. ICD 10 is a big mistake. It makes coding complicated.
The best formula, in my opinion, is to empower and educate patients.
Government and employers must provide patients with financial incentives to become educated buyers of medical care services. Patients must be given the opportunity to own their healthcare dollars and be responsible for their own health and healthcare.
Physicians collect only 10% of the healthcare dollars spent.
The real question is who collects the remainder of the 2.5 trillion dollars spent?
America should not depend on increased bureaucracy and bureaucratic staff to administer medical care with increased and confusing rules.
Everyone knows this will only result in increased inefficiency and higher costs.
The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” are, mine and mine alone.
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